1 Jul 2015

Mega-Deal: 'Anfield Insider' confirms Liverpool will sign 'world-class' £32m goal-machine 'today' or very soon

Last month, Liverpool legend Ray Houghton claimed that Aston Villa striker Christian Benteke is a 'major' transfer 'priority' for the Reds this summer, and with Benteke also admitting that he's 'very pleased' to be linked with a move to Anfield, it appears that the big Belgian is on the verge of becoming Liverpool's seventh signing of the summer.

When asked in June about Liverpool's transfer targets, Houghton revealed the following tidbit of apparent inside information. He told TalkSport:

"I heard that Benteke is one of Liverpool’s major priorities for the summer. He’s the one they’re looking for".

"He’ll fit into the [Liverpool] style of play Liverpool. He’s big, he’s physical, and he can upset defenders. He has genuine pace, and he can score goals".


Today, there are two new transfer developments:

* According to Sky Sports, Benteke - who has a £32m buyout clause in his contract - is 'odds-on' favourite to sign for Liverpool.

* In an interview with TalkSport today, alleged 'Anfield insider' Graham Beecroft revealed that a deal for Benteke is imminent. He claimed: "Benteke is very close to signing for Liverpool [who] have sealed a deal with Aston Villa. I expect him to sign if not today then certainly in the not too distant future"

Benteke - who, according to Paul Lambert, is 'world-class' - is definitely on the outs at Villa, and his agent, Kismet Eris confirmed this in May, when he told The Independent:

"He [Benteke] will not sign a new contract. He will do whatever is possible legally to leave Aston Villa. He wants to play for a higher team".



Liverpool is definitely a 'higher team' than Villa, so it looks like fans - who seem to be generally apathetic about Benteke - (in a recent site poll, 58% of fans voted AGAINST the transfer) - need to start getting used to the fact that the Belgian striker will be wearing a red shirt next season.

I am cuatiously optimistic about the transfer. When fully fit and on form, Benteke is a top Premier League striker, but it has to be for the right price. Spending £32m is a massive mistake, and it will put too much pressure on him to perform.

If Liverpool can get him for between £20m and £25m, then it will be good business, and with Lallana and Firmino with bigger price tags, there won't be such an obsessive focus on the transfer fee.

A Liverpool line-up with Benteke looks pretty tasty:

------------------ Mignolet

Clyne ------- Skrtel --- Sakho -------- Moreno

------------- Lucas ---- Hendo

--- Ibe --------- Coutinho -------- Firmino

----------------- Benteke

Add Yarmolenko to that team and it's easily top-four material.

Author: Jaimie K



207 comments:

  1. Benteke is a good player but there are too many risks involved with this transfer. One which is mentioned often on this site is whether or not he will be able to adapt to our style of play (I won't go into that) but his perfomnances for Belgium as a lone striker suggests that he won't.

    Another big risk is his injuries and his form. Consistency. Benteke has been plagued with injuries and while its not at the same level as Diaby and Sturridge, it is still pretty bad and we might go through several matches with Ings and Origi as our only fit strikers. Another factor to take into consideration is his form. In his last two seasons at Villa he has had a very inconsistent scoring streak with most of his goals coming in the space of 10-12 matches. Can we really afford to have a stiker on a goal drought for most of the season? Because his time at Villa strongly suggests that will be the case.

    But of course I would be over the moon if Benteke managed to prove me wrong bevause I don't want him to fail, I hope that he does well and bangs in 20 goals for us but I just can't see it, I don't know why.

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  2. I must admit, I'm fairly underwhelmed by this transfer, especially at whatever extortionate fee the clubs have agreed upon.
    Having said that, Benteke's a decent player and if he'd been in the squad last season, we probably would've finished top 4

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  3. Agree with all that

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  4. To be clear, imo Benteke is not a bad player. People compare him to Carroll and Lambert, but they never were to our standard. Benteke is. The problem is that he doesn't fit our style of play. He does his "thing" pretty well, it's just that it won't fit the team. If he can find a way to adapt his strengths (something Balo failed to do), then he can be a spectacular signing. If not, he'll be another flop.

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  5. Errrm Jamie you forgot Sterling from that line up?

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  6. Benteke is not the striker we need. We need a south american street fighter like Suarez not a massive target man

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  7. If Rodgers really wants a targetman like striker why not go for one who is cheaper and potentially better like Austin, batshuayi or mitrovic. I'd rather not sign a striker than waste money on benteke.
    I'd put money on the fact that ings would score more goals than benteke for us.

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  8. Benteke is inconsistent and carries injury-streaks. Yes, when he shines he shines but that's not worth the money. For me final nail is that he fits very different game, send him to Stoke or Spurs and watch up.
    Twice as good by numbers, half the price, consistent through the years and Sturridge clone-like in style is out for bids:Austin...

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  9. Lucas and Henderson in midfield, no chance of top 4!! average players at best

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  10. I say Liverpool should get lacazette instead of benteke, get a good centre midfielder or defensive midfielder and yarmolenko

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  11. Think a line up of Sturridge, Benteke, with Firmino and Coutinio, Ibe will be an awesome attacking force. Benteke has more craft skill and guile than people give him credit for. Most of his goals are scored on the counter with Villa and not as a 'target' man. Haven't mentioned Ings or Origi which are also great back ups. I am very optimistic for this season, would have rather had Higuan but Benteke is not too shabby!!!

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  12. Hendo is not average. In fact he was our best player, statistically, last year with 22 goals/ assists playing as a box-to-box midfielder which is an incredibly hard thing to do.

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  13. Benteke fitting into our system might not be the problem, it's his inconsistency. Too often he is injured and misses around 10 Premier League games, if not more, per season which would leave us with Ings, Balotelli (If he stays) and Origi as our available striking options.

    Another big problem with Benteke is that his goals come in chunks. He will have a goal drought for most of the seaosn apart from one period of games where he is on fire but he can never maintain that form which is very frustrating. We can't afford to splash the cash on a striker who- even if he does fit into our system- might not even be able to score consistently.

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  14. Add Lallana as the starter over the kid, that was always a good philosophy?

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  15. You do realize how many center mids we have?

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  16. Andy Carrol Mark 2 that will get B R the sack

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  17. not a bad shout about ings, i just have the feeling that benteke will be the injury prone type

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  18. Especially as BR seem to think that DM should read the game rather than tackle... kONDOGBIA WOULD've been perfect..

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  19. I really really rate Benteke I just think its risky considering his injury history. I don't at all subscribe to those that think he wont fit in with our style of play though. He' got far better technique than people give him credit for and at his age he is only going to develop further. If the price is 25m or less than fair enough but for more than that I would rather spend it elsewhere on a player with a better injury record. Even if its 20-25m with add ons providing he plays a certain number of games over the next 3 years or scores a set number of goals or something like that.


    It is however highly possible that Benteke is the best available striker that will come to us without CL football. Other than Higuain or Martinez, there arent really any other strikers available that I'd prefer more.


    If for nothing else at least he wont be able to tear our defence apart anymore ;)

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  20. We've got too many good mids to play them, but Benteke-Ings sound like beating any lower part of the table team...

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  21. Lovren was rubbish for us but he still gets a little leeway with people still believing he will come good, yet Sakho who actually has played well for us is still not good enough for some who always state the same argument - "he looks funny on the ball", "he can't pass" etc
    Completely nonsensical arguments. Merely jumping on the media bandwagon.

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  22. Benteke wouldn't be my first choice, but as it looks like he will be signing I hope he proves me wrong... If we signed Yarmolenko RW, and maybe a DM like Ozan Tufan DM (realistic target and highly thought off, or someone along them lines) then we would be top four

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  23. I think all those risks are manageable though, other than his iffy injury history that is. If we can keep him fit I fully expect him to be in and around the 20 league goals mark for us. I think benteke will fit our style of play, it may take him a little time to get up to speed but he's a pretty tidy footballer not just the big target man people consider him to be. With Firmino up along side him or in the hole behind he will do rather well. Also if Studge is fit those two would be an absolute lethal parring.


    With you point about consistency I think that could possible stem from a few things. One, he is often coming back from injury so it takes him time to get firing again (if we keep him fit this probably hopefully disappears with it). Secondly I think at Liverpool he will have significantly better service from the creative players behind him. Our players create so many chances each game we just didnt have a top class striker to finish them off with Studge on the sidelines. Hopefully Benteke can be that man for us.

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  24. I think the French Press got their collective panties in a wad when Origi signed with us. I'm sure they thought that Origi believed himself too good for Ligue1 and used any excuse to knock the kid down a bit. Let's give him a chance.

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  25. To ask for 32 mil pounds for Benteke is pure day-light robbery. Let's hope BR or the management can be smart for once since the end of season 13/14. There are many newspapers suggested that Lyon is willing to do business at 21 mil pounds for Alexandre Lacazette. Not sure about the degree of truth over there but if that 32 mil pounds is a sure-spend by us, then we might as well pay a little more to Lyon for the player and we should still have enough to pay for at least a year's wage for him.

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  26. Henderson was our best player by a mile last season no questions. Coutinho had a great season but without Hendo we could've easily finished 10-15 points lower. Lucas isnt the same player he use to be but his experience and professionalism is incredibly refreshing. If he can get his form back hes an awesome player to have.

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  27. I think Hendo has was one of the very few positives from last season, in my opinion he's a hardworking lad and he would be in my XI any day of the week.

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  28. 16 goals per season average over the last 3 years, with better service he might be able to give 20+, that would be a useful chunk of goals to have. If he comes we have to take a leap of faith and hope/expect a consistent return.k

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  29. I'd be surprised if we pay 32m for him. I'm in the same boat as you but tbh if we sign him I think it will make me rather happy he definitely fills a gap in our team and we wont be short on attack anymore. I think the reason the signing has been taking so long is because we are refusing to pay the asking price. I think with Benteke wanting to leave and no one else really in for him we can probably get him for like 25m with add-ons maybe. The transfer committee really seems to have their shit together this season so I dont think we will be paying over the odds for anyone.

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  30. batshuayi is not a target man AT ALL

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  31. i can already see it, we buy Benteke and him and Studge end up injured at the same time and we have to gamble our top 4 hope on firmino playing up-front.

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  32. Big bal and benteke upfornt to put away the hard work of the Brazilians could be outrageoussss!!!

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  33. Agree with this one. Even with his injuries he still scored around 15+ a season. With our midfield behind him hes capable of hitting 20+ in a season. Now that we have Ings, Origi, Balo and hopefully a fit Sturridge we have the cover available if he gets injured. Hopefully he doesnt of course but I think its a risk we can afford to take. Also with Sinclair coming through the academy and he is improving every season. If we offload balo upgrade him to in and around the first team we have so many options up front

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  34. Lacazette is worth 30-40m IMO he is top class and likely out of our league currently. Without CL football he's the kind of player we may struggle to get. Absolute dream signing but I just cant see it happening unfortunately. Also seems the kind of player that will go to a club for ambition rather than just a shed load of money.

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  35. There are swings and roundabouts, we cannot say 32 mill is too expensive for a 16 goal a season striker when we are asking 50 mill for Sterling!

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  36. Not for £32.5m.........no way.

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  37. 25mill even makes me wince but if we"re playing hardball over the fee then that has to be admired. Loving our signings being done so early, just waiting/hoping for that big name, prolific striker to come our way, would"nt it be hilarious if benteke got 25+ for us next season after most people not wanting him here.

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  38. Yeah what about him? Not saying that Firmino isn't top class, because he definitely is but Lacazette is next level. Also he's already at a club playing CL football and we got Firmino from a mid table bundesliga side.

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  39. 25mil makes we wince also but its probably in the fair range considering his potential, current quality and his age. He's relatively proven in the EPL and strikers of that quality don't come cheap. I've been super impressed with not only the players we have signed but the way we have gone about it. I dont expect us to pay more than 25mil for Benteke if they want more I wouldnt be surprised if we just walk away and see who else we can get. Maybe towards the end of the window we could overpay a little but right now we seem to be making smart transfers.


    Hilariously amazing if he does that!

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  40. Agreed. Walk away at that price. Buy two cheaper prolific strikers from random european leagues and roll the dice with them.

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  41. Pieter Engelbrecht6:15 pm, July 01, 2015

    why dont we go for the BEAST. CARVELLO. 22 mill. money well spent

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  42. I am sorry!....if LFC sign Benteke I will be gutted, (no disrespect directed at him) and it will also suggest that Brendan and "that team" have not finished smoking all the old socks at Anfield....if we are struggling in Dec this signing will come back to haunt him ...and quite rightly so.

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  43. Pieter Engelbrecht6:17 pm, July 01, 2015

    carvalho the man. or alex song for a cut price.why aint there no bid for ADIANO?.ANYBODY please solve this mystery

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  44. Yeah I mentions Carvalho on another comment just before as an option for us. He would be one of the best CDM we could sign I feel. Fits out policy as he is only 20. Is an absolute tank of a player and has the potential to become a truly world class CDM

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  45. Says a mid table fan... Show some class mate, and give the bloke a chance and the respect he deserves..... After all, he actually plays for Liverpool, you just comment on them.

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  46. Pieter Engelbrecht6:19 pm, July 01, 2015

    definately not ALLEN. He is br best buddy

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  47. If we are going for another winger/ attacking midfielder then Yarmolenko is that man! He. An score, create and has the strength to excel in the league, he's not slow either.
    I would prefer Illaramendi coming in because he is the perfect Rodgers signing and can fulfil the role that Rodgers had for Gerrard but Illara can succeed where he failed. Gerrard was too attack minded to play at CDM whereas Illaramendi has been playing well at CDM for a while and has an unbelievable passing range. Illara can instigate attacks Busquests style and can protect the back four very well.

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  48. Dream on! 20-25 million?! Good luck with that one!

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  49. They might all be manageable but the question is can we take the risk? It's hard because if Benteke does adapt and stays injury free then we have a monster on our hands. However that scenario seems very unlikely based on his last few seasons at Villa.

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  50. Theycallmemrburt6:25 pm, July 01, 2015

    Another big risk is his behavior when the big or even bigger clubs that he is currently at start swarming. His attitude can be selfish (which is his prerogative) . When he was at Standard Liege he refused to go out on loan. After one season at Genk he allegedly went on strike to force through a move to Villa. After one season with Villa and an impending bid from Tottenham, Benteke went militant once again handing in a transfer request only to eventually sign on at Villa for bigger money.

    My point is, just as Suarez disrespectfully spoke of his love for Barcelona in 2011 after his first season with us:

    Speaking in an interview with Don Balon, Suarez said: "Before
    meeting Pere Guardiola, my current agent, I had this illusion, that
    dream of a chance [to play] on that team [Barcelona]. Obviously he
    [Pere] is a person related to Barcelona by his brother, but work
    situations are totally different relationships. If Guardiola wanted me,
    he would want me no matter who represents me."

    We have been warned with regards to Benteke too. We should go into any future relationship with our eyes wide open and not slate him when he decides his next step up is due.... If he does well it will undoubtedly happen leaving a lot of fans shocked and dismayed. Here's a heads up.

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  51. That's what I keep telling the Missus

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  52. Don't get over excited benteke and his agent aren't in the uk and Belgian press reports state the agent is shocked a deal has been done as there hasn't been an offer submitted by anyone I remember this time last year a lot of very excited Spurs fans and reporters saying he was having a medical only to find that Spurs hadn't even bid for him.

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  53. Yeah I agree with you fully on that one. I think its about whether or not we can take the risk. I think the reality of the situation is there just aren't many top class, proven strikers available to us in the current market with our current circumstances. As such Benteke appears to be one of the better options out there. He's averaged 16 goals a season over the past 3 years which is pretty solid with that Villa team behind him. They have been rather awful for large parts of the previous 3 years. Really good in patches but overall the team is pretty inconsistent. With our midfield he's a 20+ goals a year player IMO. I honestly do think he is worth the risk but only for the right price. 32.5mil or whatever they want is not at all the right price. for 25mil I think its just worth it. Only just.

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  54. he doesn't comment...just bashes the guy who actually has a beter PL goals ratio to his idol 'Benayoun'

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  55. maybe we should have signed benteke in january as i suggested at the time. im sure he would have been available much cheaper because his season was disappointing at that point due to poor form and injuries. despite this i was confident he could still be a success and now we are yet again going to pay the top price for someone because the transfer committee seems to be rather short sighted.

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  56. Maybe so. I was a bit skeptical at first about signing him but I think you may just have won me over. The only thing I am concerned about is that he is very isolated when played as a lone striker. He just doesn't function very well there and can only play well as a lone striker if lots of crosses are supplied for him to feed off of.

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  57. Don't you disagree with signing players who take a lot of time off injuries? In less than two years Benteke has spent over 200 days on the injury table. Luckily for Villa the majority of that was between mid April and mid September last year. That's 4 separate injuries including an Achilles tendon rupture.

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  58. Yeah I do agree with you there. I dont think he plays well as a lone striker either but I think we will play formations that include 2 up front next season. With the signings we have I think we will switch it up a little. They have to be planning for studge to be fit and firing at this stage. If he get injured long term again than I think BR will go to plan B but I'd have to assume he plans on playing sturridge, beneteke and Firmino and coutinho in the same squad.

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  59. Ghost of Suarez6:39 pm, July 01, 2015

    It would have been more than short sighted to sign him in January, it would have been downright irresponsible. He still would have commanded a substantial fee and wages and you can never be sure how a player will recover from such an injury....just ask Radamel Falcao. We did the only thing we could do by waiting..

    Warren Horton said later on talksport he understands we have negotiated a fee "substantially lower than the buy out clause" so that's gotta be at least £5m and approaching the price range Jaimie quoted in the article, which is entirely acceptible.

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  60. Ghost of Suarez6:52 pm, July 01, 2015

    Lyon have qualified for the CL and stated they wouldn't sell for €50m (about £38m) bit rich although he looks the real deal....No CL is a problem.

    I don't think Benteke is a square peg in a round hole, it's not a bad thing to be powerful and good in the air, as long as you are also quick and mobile which he is. Granted not quite as good with the ball at his feet at Sturridge but if you watch his goals from time at Villa lot scored with pace and skill rather than power. His record is streaky but that maybe as much to do with Villa struggling to create for him at times as anything else. He clearly would have got in our team last season and a scoring run like he had for Villa from Feb would have seen us get in the CL. Remember too that we won't be solely relying on him, reports say his hip op has fixed the on going thigh problem and with Origi (who I think is going to surprise a few) and Ings we will have option with good pace and movement.

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  61. I also forgot about his age, 24 i think, just coming into his prime years and like you say he"s proven himself in the prem to an extent so if he can get those 20+ goals for us next season then 25mill would look cheap i suppose, its like most new signings, you just dont know how its going to work out but the evidence is there for benteke to be a hit, i"m starting to talk myself into favouring this transfer, lol.

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  62. Theycallmemrburt6:56 pm, July 01, 2015

    lol yep never thought of it like that....flipping eck we're stock piling...

    Our squad balance requires me to have a higher IQ to place all of the square pegs into round holes. If 'square peg' a plays 86 minutes per match and 'round hole' b plays 37 minutes per match then why will it always be Ballotellis fault?...........

    that pesky Rodgers he's always one step ahead of the game.

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  63. He has a release clause of €46m.

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  64. Ibe over Lallana as a starter is crackers.

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  65. I too think origi will surprise alot of people, i think he had a bad season last one because his head was already at LFC and considering he badly wanted to join us in january but was forced to stay at lille i reckon he lost some heart for the club aswell, all points to why he had a bad season, i feel he could be a star in the prem next season if rodgers gives him game time and plenty of it.

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  66. Well, 12 players for 6 spots sound good actually but that ain't easy- balancing and rotating.. Plus I get the impression that Mario and Allen are staying which makes it 14, I forgot Lazar, and with few youngsters ready... But it seems that we are doing what FSG always wanted to do- to have a lot of players we can use to win trophies or to sell to get other players that can bring similar effect.
    Again rotating is an art form and BR is no Rafa in that sense.. Plus Rafa's biggest mistake was rotating after all, at the 07 final.. Any serious discussion regarding what we should do takes me to a dozen digressions and my head feels like bursting...

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  67. I suppose Rodgers' preferred style will have to be Benteke-taka next season then.

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  68. Not 100% sure what that phrase means, but I think I agree..

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  69. L O L.


    More like, hoof the Tiki Benteke Taka.

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  70. Why is your reply ''not active'', what does that mean?

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  71. Ibe = more pace and power. The fact that he he has already been at the club weeks ago having training sessions etc with Dalglish shows that he is up for the challenge.


    Lallana = still needs to prove himself.

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  72. Lallana could be a great super-sub as well. Some players are just more effective that way.

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  73. He needs to be able to stay fit first.

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  74. Lallana needs to prove himself by being a sub for a 18 year old? Can't see the reasoning behind that..

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  75. Theycallmemrburt7:14 pm, July 01, 2015

    Lallana is actually one of my favourite players to watch on form. Reminds me of Chris Waddle and Le tissier. He looks shattered and then bursts in to life. I hope he gets a good pre season in.

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  76. Watching as I type... agree, absolutely fantastic to watch and a lot of parallels to how we have previously played and where we think BR wants to return us to.
    It sure is a risky style though and you can see how anything other than a totally sorted defence will leak goals, because I'm seeing that as comfortable as their defence are in regularly bringing the ball out to the halfway line or further, and to be fair they do look 'very' comfortable doing that (our previous discussion point, confirmed - major defensive improvement required :) if they lose that ball they're/we're so open to a counter.
    Having said that, they have the whole thing completely nailed and when it works you can see where the death by football kicks in - they do maintain the energy and it seems instinctual as to when to go back, forward, long or short, out wide or direct and so on, and in doing so relentlessly, it's just a matter of time before they overwhelm the opposition, as we also did many a time during 2013/14 :)
    Actually, making the point about needing a 'sorted' defence, I think it's fair to say that every member of the team needs to be totally on song and at 100% for this to really work and it painfully reinforces what we all knew of last season - completely as you say - without the correct type and quality of player up front then we have ourselves a bit of an accordion effect going on; ball goes out to defence, they push up and pass into midfield who themselves are busy flying up the pitch and then - bam - the whole lot stalls and compresses somewhere in no-mans land and we're neither providing an outlet/threat in the oppo's area OR adequately defending our own area, ten or twenty minutes of this and the opposition only grow in confidence while we do quite the opposite, not what we want at all.
    So, if we say that Sanchez is just a poor mans Firmino and Vidal and co (very, very, very good, I agree :) meet the criteria for the midfield test case that we've talked of:
    Do we think that in Couts, Hendo, Lallana, Milner, Can, and Ibe we are nearly there (hopefully add Illarramendi still as the not just a stand up tackling kind of guy but our 'great at doing just that and also a whole lot more guy') in having the means to do likewise... Ings, Studge and Lacazette takes care of the Vargas position, so maybe we just need to really tie up this Lacazette deal that we know is definitely going to happen and then perhaps add a top class CB upgrade to our defensive ranks...*
    *I see a few threads ahead that we may be about to sign a Lacateke instead of a Benazette so perhaps the master plan will need a bit of re-jigging :)

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  77. It is not about that. So it makes Ibe inferior?


    What has Lallana done to prove that he should start matches?

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  78. Theycallmemrburt7:17 pm, July 01, 2015

    its a witch hunt lool. I may have edited something either that or I no longer have my status as a certified pro-biotic yogurt. I'm thinking The first one.....

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  79. Meanwhile in the real actual world, Lallana has getting on for 300 league appearances over 10 years and 15 England caps. It's easy indulge the *fantasy* that Ibe is better than Lallana, because you've barely seen the lad play. You know nothing about him when the pressure's on, when different challenges come up that someone like Lallana's seen and dealt with many times before. We're talking about professional football in England, man. Ibe is the one who needs to prove himself and develop his game, and to do that the last thing he needs is to be promoted beyond his depth. It's just daft.

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  80. Gross negligence if we go and pay the £32.5m for Benteke and much higher wages than what he is earning at Villa. I could of course be proven wrong but I really am not keen on this deal going through.

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  81. I'm a midtable fan yet you're the one in love with midtable players. "Lallana has just as much of a chance as Coutinho and Firmino"....he's light years from them. A lesser player in every aspect of the game.

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  82. Theycallmemrburt7:20 pm, July 01, 2015

    There are so many players we have only given a handful of games to. Maybe it is due to activation of clauses in their respective contracts that we are so quick to freeze players out.

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  83. Jaimie I love how you never included Milner in a starting XI!!! Makes me laugh every time.

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  84. If Lallana is a regular starter this season then lets talk again.

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  85. That is his opinion.

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  86. If we must :)

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  87. Milner will start 99% of the time. Massive wages, guaranteed 1st team football otherwise he would not have joined.

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  88. Of course. everything he says is based on fact. Jaimie will agree.

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  89. Sturridge can play out wide as part of a front 3, so why not in a 4231.

    Sturridge-----Coutinho------ Firmino

    Benteke

    Thats a dangerous attack

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  90. Head in the sand, denial again. You said he didn't have a run of games, I disproved it. Lallana is poor mate, no amount of games is gonna change that.

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  91. I wouldn't say that. Just on observation and reflection (well... not always reflection), same as everyone else. Again Logan there's no need to make this into something personal. I don't know why you feel either entitled or that it's necessary to do that. It's ok to disagree with people.

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  92. Downing at least had pace, and didn't fade completely after the 60 minute mark. He's a much better all round player than Lallana, had a much better season at West Ham as well. Having said that, that's gonna be Lallana's next stop, the likes of West Brom, Stoke, etc...

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  93. That means we again don't need the defence, like 13/14. tHE DIFFERENCE BEING WE HAVE IT THIS TIME ARROUND....

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  94. Do you understand the meaning of BANTER?


    Do not be so sensitive mate.

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  95. OK I will man up.

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  96. I say it is facts, that is enough..

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  97. Learned a lot from this thread, good stuff.

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  98. Get your facts first, then you can distort them as you please.

    Mark Twain

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  99. Theycallmemrburt7:29 pm, July 01, 2015

    Ibe will be a brilliant player. I already prefer him over Sterling, as one is a winger and the other a striker who cant finish shoved out to the sides. Whilst sterling gets a yard on players out wide young Ibe flies past them. I do however think Ibe struggled fitness wise when he came back from derby and seemed dead on his legs in the closing stages of matches. His time will definitely come though....maybe when Firmino proves he is the second coming of Iago Asas :D

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  100. Too late now ;-)

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  101. I wouldn't suggest that against decent opposition, but we could destroy some teams with that

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  102. I think and hope that given the *right* tools for the job and a *fair* amount of time in which to sharpen them, BR can do us proud and develop and maintain a style of play similar, albeit a little better, than the Chile example above.
    Don't get me wrong, I do think that even without (arguably) the players he wanted last season, he did make a bit of a pigs ear of it but in my view, and I understand everyone's got their own, the potential is there for him to return us to the heady heights of challenging for the title and to look pretty darn fine whilst doing it. - Us that is, not him,- that's the team actually, not us, we'll all be looking deliriously happy :)

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  103. Theycallmemrburt7:32 pm, July 01, 2015

    alright you go home that way.........and YOU go home that way :)

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  104. I do agree with your main arguments but I saw the Belgium USA game recently and Benteke was very involved with play, showing some things I've not seen from him much before. He's a better, more skilled and adaptable player, than he gets credit for. But I'd still prefer we went after someone else...

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  105. I am sure Mark will agree with me..

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  106. are you saying we have our defence sorted out for this season ?

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  107. Ooh don't know about this. Sterling is such a ferocious talent with the ball at his feet. I sort of wonder if, with his build and everything, Ibe might end up moving inside? He's got a vicious shot on him, and I'm concerned that he does get his head down in good positions still. He's still a rough diamond for me, and I wonder if he ever will develop into a real quality player... like Lallana ;)

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  108. Yep. Sako is a beast, Skrtel is still reliable. Lovren will come good and we have one experienced and one hungry sub for the CB. We have Clyne who looks like he can play 45 matches and play them good, we have Moreno who is hopefully done with the brainfarts- otherwise a very good player and Flanno coming back to get the additional flare(on either flank) just when we need him. Plus a youngster to cover. Don't you?

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  109. We can do smarter and equally lethal than that against top 4...

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  110. How much Yarmolenko would cost?

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  111. Coutinho had 8 goals and 6 assists overall, most were big goals as well. The lad never hides and is very much a big game player.


    For an attacking midfielder who also played centre-mid for a club without a single decent striker (he created 58 chances in the league, to Lallana's 32, Firmino, who is the player who created the most chances in the past 2 seasons in Germany, registered 69 last season alone), and for someone who does not take penalties like Gerrard or Hazard, that's a decent return.


    Of course next season, you'd expect him to reach at the very least double figures, with a new striker, a top player in Firmino alongside him and a fit Sturridge, that's logical progression.


    That's not the point though, people keep bringing stats with regards to Lallana because that's the only way they can quantify him as a player, as more often then not, you forget he's even on the field. It only takes 5 minutes of watching both to see the immense chasm between them quality wise. It's as clear an axiom as there is.

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  112. Awesome read, Case!

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  113. First of all Milner would not come if he wasn't going to be a starter. Secondly, Can and not Lucas should be in the DM role next season.

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  114. Majority probably agrees, but I think that most importantly- Can doesn't...

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  115. Got a feeling the powers that be may well agree with you about another new keeper being a luxury item we can do without this summer, still not sure myself, like Mingo and his improvement was there for all to see but if we're honest is really the one... long-term... probably not. Will Bogdan be 'the one'... lot of unknowns we're dealing with here.

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  116. Theycallmemrburt7:53 pm, July 01, 2015

    Ibe really reminds me of Joaquín he is lke jonah lomu on the flank :) I think Ibe has the potential to comfortably play on the last man number 10 or out wide. I agree though he will need to add to his game or run the risk of being found out.


    Sterling, I don't think, will ever have the end product to be truly great (so 50 mill is absurd). Have you read Paul Scholes article on Sterlings technique? I was thinking it a while before I read it and was happy to have a pub league player like scholes ;) confirm it. McMananaman had the same technical issue when striking the ball, as does crouch. They are capable of wondrous goals but when they need to apply power invariably their technique are and were unable to hold up to scrutiny. I don't think striking the ball naturally and cleanly can be taught.

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  117. No, you didn't... Tell me how many games he started, and how many of those games came in runs....

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  118. Muhammad Ibrahim8:02 pm, July 01, 2015

    I would rather us get an up coming striker with some first team experience like Mitrovick or Volland, ahead of Benteke; as he is too much of a risk for the amount of money being quoted.


    I know we have made a number of signings already at this stage of the silly season, but we have not addressed real issue positions which are up front in the center and middle of midfield, most notably a CDM. These positions really cost of last season, although Ings is an upgrade to the back up we already had

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  119. Where does all this hatred come from? are you a fan of LFC, or a fan of ripping people to shredds....You have a poor opinion of the players, and non of it is justified.....You just need to look at Coutinho's game to see that he has his flaws, and aspects of his game are inferior to Lallana's... But whatever, you have your bizarre reason to slate Lallana, and nothing I say will change that...

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  120. I get the feeling we will see Milner and hendo playing together in the 2 deeper midfield spots. Huge misstake IMO because neither of them is an established DM, but Rodgers doesn't fancy defending anyways...

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  121. He should never have went to Bayern because there was no chance ever to outshine ribery and robben in their prime.

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  122. Joaquin! Perfect comparison. That's really good.



    Sterling played his best games for us as a second striker -- actually really a transitions machine, playing the kind of role that Markovic played for Benfica, carrying the ball at pace through the midfield to launch transitions, and looking for angles to attack the penalty area with directness only towards the ends of the halves. He was really good at that -- as was Macca of course. The end product there is more difficult to measure -- much of the good work players of that kind do is about momentum and territory. I still rate Sterling obviously :)

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  123. Sorry to jump in Neutral, but knowing we also differ slightly on where we stand regards Brendan. Can I just say that I completely agree with points 1.) 2.) 4.) 5.) 6.) and to a lesser extent 7.) and 8.)
    Think we've probably talked at length about many, if not all those subjects but I genuinely thought that was a great post and hope I'm not being disingenuous in suggesting it probably covers many others' views as well your own and covers them succinctly.
    Hope none of that comes across as patronising in any way as it's certainly not intended to, but with the BR debate being a constant source of disagreement amongst fans, I don't think it hurts at all, to sometimes mention the points we *do* agree on :)

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  124. In my opinion, Lucas should be the DM, with Milner and Henderson playing in front of him.


    But the numbers are telling the story that Lucas is either going to be sold, or if he sticks around, he won't be starting regularly.

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  125. Not sure about that! - 'awesome being in the eye of the beholder' or similar. Appreciated the Chile - Peru heads up and the on-going food for thought though and glad you made it through my reply :)
    Just a quick appendage: I hadn't clocked your 'pre-post' warning below when I added mine above - just in case with the amount of sarcasm I tend to write with you'd misconstrued it as a 'copycat' or 'p*sstake' type thing - you probably hadn't and I'm a touch paranoid maybe, definitely, at times: - it was a genuine notification of impending waffle though.
    Anyway, I should tidy up loose ends in other threads and leave you in peace as I'm itching to head along to the Benteke news article and see what everyone has made of it all...

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  126. Views from a Villa fan. It's interesting to read all your thoughts about a player who I have seen first hand since he first signed for Villa. When Benteke first came to Villa he really struggled to adapt, he couldn't hit a barn door and had problems reading the game. Once he settled he simply couldn't stop scoring, and that is pretty much where he is right now. He is a massive talent, he is big, very decent in the air, but no slouch on the ground either. He can really bully defenders but brings others into play also. I have no doubt that Benteke could do well in any top 4 team that would play to his strength. He isn't a player that does so well when he isolated, he needs support and runners around him. I'd also like to challenge this myth that he is injury prone. He has had one bad injury, snapped achilles, that has caused some problems and a lengthy lay off, but otherwise he gets plenty of pitch time and he is well over that now. Personally I'm not sure he is worth £32M, but he is at least as good as Wilfried Bony who City paid £28M for and he scores more goals. Please don't compare him to Carroll or Lambert, he is a far better all round player, and when you think that Liverpool paid £16M for Ballotelli then it starts to look like good business. Obviously I hope we keep him but wanted to share my views.

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  127. That being said, he's IMO never worth £32.5 M, not in a million years and not even in a parallel universe.

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  128. It's not hatred, it's to do with logic and people who just blatantly betray it. You said Lallana would start over Firmino and that he has just as much of a chance of being in the side as Coutinho. To which I say: nonsense.


    Your reasoning rewards both mediocrity and inferiority and undermines meritocracy. It's a recipe for failure.


    Lallana's performances (for the entire season by the way, 41 appearances and 33 of them starts) and talent are inferior to either Coutinho or Firmino, therefore, no he should not have as much of a chance as them as you suggested. Anything but, as he's a lesser player, who just had a terrible season, while the other two, are far superior players who had great seasons individually.


    It's that simple. And you're wrong again, Coutinho has no inferior aspect compared to Lallana, absolutely none.

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  129. Nice comments. Makes me feel a lot better about him but I agree £32.5M is a bit Rich, Nick....

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  130. Same here 4-3-3 with lucas or can as DM and hendo + Milner would be my prefered formation.
    But this would mean Cou and firmino playing on the wings, which could end in lacking pace on the wings.

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  131. Nonsense, Insider?? Houghton's just talking about what everybody has heard in the British media. He's not somebody like Ian Rush who still has close connections with the club.

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  132. And Shaqiri is off to Stoke...

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  133. Isn't crazy that there is no way 4-3-3 can work for us?

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  134. Even if we do play very well we can't really expect to compete United, City, Chelsea, and Arsenal's money and experience. 5th is probably the best we can hope for till Wenger retires and even the. Arsenal might not regress. United, City and Chelsea are there to stay and they have the financial power to outmuscle us in the transfer market every time.

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  135. I feel the same mate at the price they are asking I'd much rather we go for somebody else but, is it our own fault? After all we are asking for £50m for Sterling, 7 league goals wasn't it. Maybe Villa have seen our asking price and thought if he's worth that surely Benteke is worth at least £32.5m. Can we really complain about price when we are asking £50m for a twenty year old winger whose had one good season in the PL.

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  136. Don't think how Houghton could have inside information. He's not like an Ian Rush who still has close connections to he club. I believe Houghton is just speaking about what we have all heard in the media.

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  137. we pretty much had those same players in defence last season although there was a lack of continuity due to player injuries.. unless they turn it around and show massive improvements i dont see it as any different from last season.. so until they show up and prove their mettle i would still say that the defence is not sorted out..

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  138. Was Stan not talking about Markovic rather than Lallana, either way you're totally wrong:
    Lallana's been up in the rarefied 'quality player' atmosphere so long that he's forgotten what mediocrity even looks like.

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  139. Hah, no, everything's fine, and I genuinely appreciate your thoughts. It's been great having you around on here last few weeks, real breath of hot... I mean, of fresh air ;)

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  140. Scored and assisted more for us last season despite an unsettled season.
    Ibe 14 games 1 goal 1 assist (so 1 in 7)
    Lallana 41 games 6 goals 4 assists (so just under 1 in 4).
    Plus Lallana allows for more flexibility in formations.
    Ibe offers plenty of speed and power, Lallana offers more creativity and guile.
    Which one (if any) starts should be down to: form, opposition and tactics.

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  141. There is a way, there is always a way. If we change the type of 4-3-3 we play to a 2-1 pivot instead of a 1-2. This means having two CM and one CAM instead of one CDM and two CM. To clarify it could look like this:

    ----------- GK + Defense-----------
    -------Hendo----------Milner-------
    ------ --------Coutinho
    Ibe/ Lallana----------------Firmino
    ----------Sturridge/ Benteke-----

    This formation prioritises attacking and pressurising over the risk of getting caught on the counter. Hendo and Milner's energy here enables the front 4 to focus on purely attacking and when we lose possession they have to run back and cover and threatening passes and buy the team time to get organised and back into shape.

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  142. I hate to argue Stan and specially when I can see that many posters have strong views (which I'm not daft enough to dismiss)
    Just don't rate Sakho that highly myself; if I'm really honest, I feel he looks ungainly because he is exactly that and although I can't and won't argue his passing stats are near exemplary, I just have a gut feeling it doesn't come naturally to him and at some stage the cracks will start to appear. I also hate it when he does his little tricks in what I see as dangerous positions and again feel that at some stage that may cost us dearly - I really don't want to see any of our players needlessly showboating, which is what, IMO, he's done on several occasions.
    His decision making also seems poor to me and I'm sure it leads to him retaining the ball longer than he should, thus inviting pressure and then the above 'showboat' party piece to escape the situation - that in turn I'm fairly certain, has lead to some unnecessary corners and throw ins being conceded.
    I guess the counter argument is that BR and the team in general also performed poorly and that you guys see Sakho has the skills to do well when the rest of the team does and maybe I'm missing that bit - I also want to say I don't think he's terrible by any means, it's just right at this minute he's not quite up to the grade I think we need for consistent top four finishes - be very happy to be proved wrong though :)

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  143. About £18m-£22m. He is a prolific winger with mind-blowing stats and would be worth the price.

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  144. Thx DAROVAR, I'm honestly confused as which transfer is better, Yarmolenko or Konoplyanka? both great but one is free the other costs a pretty penny too..

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  145. Thanks for taking the time to share - much appreciated.

    Ultimately, if LFC do sign Benteke, I'd like to see whether he can strike up a partnership with either Sturridige or Origi.

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  146. Eventually Can may well become a decent DM. But at the moment he is no way close to being a DM as he does not read the game well and does not have the experience/nous yet to sniff out danger.

    Currently only Lucas has this ability in the current squad - and this should NOT be belittled as it is an essential requirement to balance attack vs defence.

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  147. Or they're basing it on an existing view of how the player has previously performed and their hope and rational expectancy that he'll return to that level :)
    Lallana will definitely come good :)

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  148. IMO Yarmolenko is the better transfer target even though he is more costly, he has a better chance of hitting the ground running than Konplyanka because of his impressive physique and superior end product.
    On the other hand, Konoplyanka was voted Player of the Year for three of the last four years (I'm not sure font quote me on that) and is a free so there is no risk involved and he has a higher chance of being resold for a profit.
    So if you want a player to improve the first team then Yarmolenko is your guy. If you want resale value (Looking at you FSG) then go Konoplyanka. It all depends on our model going forward.

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  149. Wow, a fantastic reply;)

    P.S. on the 2nd thought, Yarmolenko all day long the guy looks like a rock star!

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  150. I remember reading once that Fergie turned down the chance to sign Jordan Henderson because of they way he ran... Makes no difference to the way he plays football, but it makes him look slightly weird when walking and running, almost bouncy and lollopy..., But the bloke has a hell of a pass on him when he's on his game.... Same thing with Sakho... He moves in a awkward way, looking as though he's about to trip himself up at any moment.... But, he doesn't, and for the most part he has good control of the ball.... It's weird really, the impressions we get of certain people based on the way they carry themselves.... As for his decision making, well, I give him some leeway becuase he is young, and that will improve over time. CB's as a rule reach their prime later than attackers, usually around 26/27 yrs old.. So considering the fact that he was Captain of PSG and a regular starter for France before he came to LFC, I'd say we did alright signing him.... Compared to Lovren last season, he's basically the Messi of the defensive world..... What would worry me though, is if he started making the sort of mistakes that lead to opposition goals, and for now, he doesn't.... Hell. He's better than Cahill, or those muppets Utd call defenders...

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  151. OK sonny.

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  152. I think on the team selected above I'd probably would have Milner in there for Lucas

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  153. Have to say, even after reading every post, I'm still at a bit of a loss on this one - if you just consider these two points:
    Studge - you'd think one of the first and most important things for our 'marquee' to not be, is injury prone (even taking into account the words from the Villa fan who was kind enough to share his insight, I'd still say (respectfully) when you already have a Studge, you really shouldn't be adding a Benteke.
    Balo - As much as anyone else, I very much wanted him to be a success and do well at our Club. I watched all the highlight reels and saw some great footwork and equally great goals and although he didn't seem to really suit our system tried to convince myself that maybe BR would make it work... So you see where I'm going with this - the majority of posts seem to agree that Benteke' main game at the moment is not ideally suited to us - so quite simply, why are we even contemplating this as being anything other than, less than ideal.
    It seems to me we are in danger of going down the exact same route as last summer, albeit a touch earlier - BR is not for turning - player adapts, not him.

    Don't get me wrong Benteke is obviously a far better bet than Balo and has shown so in the Prem, but I think the parallels are there to be fairly made. If the deal does go through I'll be scouring the interweb though, trying to prove myself wrong and of course he'll get my full support regardless. I would however, prefer we kept the money and used it in other positions if we really can't find someone better suited, IMO, than Benteke.
    Sorry that probably was more than just two points :)

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  154. True but imagine how much they'd want for him if he was English...

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  155. I see the comparison with Hendo but honestly, I promise you I'm not as shallow as to judge a person or football player on appearance in general, all I'm saying with Sakho is that he seems a touch lacking in balance and control - not a good attribute for a footballer that's all.
    Hendo may have a slightly unusual gait but the differing factor IMO is Hendo = bl&&dy good at football, *for me* Sakho not so much.
    I know he plays well for France and previously did so for PSG but I'm still not convinced he's reached the required level for us.
    Am always trying to see him in a more positive light though and fully intend to wipe my 'Sakho memory banks' come the start of the season and hope not just him but all our defence really nail it from the get go.
    *utd - how lucky were they to have their muppets misgivings concealed on a weekly basis by De Gea - looks like they're currently trying to keep him at all costs - be a crying shame if they don't succeed :)

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  156. No Emre Can in that team. And yet Hendo and Lucas are in. Ridiculous. As for Benteke, he was nowhere to be seen in the FA Cup final. 32.5 million for a man who goes missing on the big occasion. Who gets injured a lot. Who throws his dummy out the pram when he doesn't get his own way. A player of limited skills. Liverpool should not buy Benteke. What we need is a skillful tricky player, like Antoine Greizmann. Someone who will be fast and clever, who will inter-link well between Phillipe, Roberto and Emre. I read a report a while ago that a club could get Greizmann for around 24 million, he would be cheaper than Benteke and far better suited to Liverpool's style of play.

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  157. It is, especially because it used BR's to be BR's prefered formation. I quite like the 4-3-3, but with the signings we made (especially Milner and firmino) I can't see us playing it.

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  158. We need Lacassette, Shaqiri also Cabaye dude.
    Top four materialize.

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  159. Isn't Benteke very similar in style and physique to Balotelli but will cost nearly twice as much?
    It doesn't make any sense to me.
    Also I notice in your team JK, Milner doesn't feature but Lucas does, even if Lucas is still around in a few weeks I can't see him being ahead of Milner or Can.

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  160. Thats it! I think its easy to not be inspired by Benteke. Hes just not the samba flair players people want but I feel he could be an absolute monster striker for us providing he stays at least half fit. Given all that we know about the guy and what he's done over the past few seasons I'd say its a risk worth taking. Massive sell on value too which is whats probably appealing about him for FSG.

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  161. If benteke scores 15+ goals then 25- 32 million won't matter, and is still more than twice as good as balotelli/aspas/borini/lambert combined. Which proves that no matter the price, if you don't score goals you ain't worth it.

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  162. Noraset Rerkkachornkiat4:28 am, July 02, 2015

    Buying Benteke might be just fine if that means we can sell both Lambert and Borini; hopefully for around 10Mil+. I'll keep Ibe as Lallana understudy. Save money from buying Yarmalenko and get Konoplyanka for free. Sell Allen, Lucas and Alberto to use that money to buy Illarmendi. Loan out Balotelli and Markovic for a season to gain their confidence. Sell Enrique and terminate Manquillo's contract to clear the path for Lucas Digne. And we are all set to be revitalized again.

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  163. We are not much good at playing 4231 and that side would fail to make the top 5 even.

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  164. I think the way we should look at it (the new signings) is that they are all upgrades on the outgoing or out of favour players that they are replacing. Bogdan is a definite upgrade on Jones, Clyne is a huge upgrade on Johnson, Milner is a big upgrade on Allen, even on last season's Gerrard, and Ings is a much better player than Borini and Lambert.We've accomplished those upgrades with minimal expenditure, freeing us up to make the big Firmino signings. Top job by Ayre & Co, long may it continue.

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  165. Is that you being optimistic Jamie, shame on you

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  166. This is becoming a total cliche now: why do you and others use *one* game to define Benteke's entire Villa career? So he didn't have a good game in the FA Cup final - big freakin' deal. Coutinho had quite a few ineffective games last season - does that mean he's now rubbish?

    Gerrard, Sterling, Coutinho etc were in the team when Liverpool got spanked 6-1 by Stoke - are they all poor footballers now? No, because one game doesn't define a player.

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  167. You forgot Ibe was on loan?


    He scored six and assisted twice during his loan spell.

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  168. For 25M Benteke is seriously good Business. He is 20+ goals easily if played right, service from the likes of Coutinho & Firmino should go on ahead to confirm this. He adds more dimension to our attack with his aerial ability, he has good work ethic, he is good with the ball at his feet, he is very clinical and rarely wastes his chances, he is a good team player, he has great positioning sense and faster than most people give him credit for. And he is 24yrs old so his best years are most likely ahead of him.

    It's disgraceful to compare him to Caroll(8 seasons) who has scored less EPL goals than Benteke(3 Seasons, injuries included) His fitness does not worry me too much as his 2 main injuries mainly came through bad tackles and he's also averaged 33 appearances for Villa this last 3 seasons.

    Look, potentially, players like Aubemayang, Higuain and Lacazette may potentially fit our system better than Benteke but realistically prying them from Dortmund, Napoli and Lyon will be highly unlikely.

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  169. Do you not think Houghton still speaks with Rush and Dalglish?

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  170. Completely agree. Thee is a lot of nonsense said about Benteke from people who haven't really seen him play so to hear this from a Villa fan is heartening. I personally think he will be a massive hit at Liverpool.

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  171. Why go for an up and coming striker rather than a prem proven one, especially when we need to hit the ground running from the first day of the season if we are to challenge for the title and a top four place?
    Whoever we buy is going to be under immense pressure.

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  172. That's your opinion and your entitled to it, as is everyone else.

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  173. Yeah, we know.
    You don't half repeat yourself.

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  174. original-gideon7:33 am, July 02, 2015

    Seems very similar to the Balotelli deal. I'd like him-if the deal happens-to prove me wrong. Can't see it happening. Doesn't strike me as consistent enough. We have enough players like that already.

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  175. How you can compare Hypia with Lucas is beyond me! Hypia was a leader and solid defender who did not give away cheap freekicks and penalties. Lucas on the other hand puts his hand up first for all the above. Hpia may have gotten slow as he went into his 30's, Lucas has always been slow at tracking back and tackling. Lucas should be sold to whomever comes calling!

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  176. My evaluation is that while his contract is running out, he appears 2/3 steps ahead of Kolo hence Im baffled by the decision to give Kolo a new contract.Is it not just a case of KK signed Coates and BR signed Kolo? So BR's evaluation of the 2 players is coloured by the glasses of who bought who

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  177. James 'Friggin' Milner will never feature in a team by JK.

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  178. Stan I'll just argue Lovren's and Sakho's last year stats just for comparison- i know Lovren didn't impress just bare with me :) Sakho has 90% passing accuracy compared to Lovren's 85%, Lovren has more interception's per game 2, compared to Sakho's 1,8, Lovren has higher number of won headers around 70%, compared to Sakho's 40%, and Sakho has won 57% of all attempted ground tackles compared to Lovren's 43% -courtesy of Squawka Opta stats. I disregarded Lovren's mistakes leading to goal because the last one happenned mid-December. just saying :)

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  179. Coates good enough to play for Argentina but not for LFC . Lucas ; great player ; 1 goal in 6 years ( you would expect a G/K to have a better scoring record) plus gives away an average of 2/3 free kicks per game all in dangerous areas . Cannot get rid of him quick enough for me . Also Allen I have seen stronger 12 year olds playing the game

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  180. We're winning nothing with Hendo and Lucas together in midfield, or Can in defence

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  181. David Godoy Cano10:51 am, July 02, 2015

    He is a little similar to Balotelli, but more dynamic in how he moves, i really hope the we will play a second striker if we sign him. We need a striker "type Sturridge" who constantly are pushing the "offside trap" That givea our Attacking midfielders room to shine.

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  182. Thanks Case - much appreciated.

    As you're aware, I don't like to be antagonistic and deliberately go out there to annoy people. I do not hate BR, but genuinely believe he is not up to the job. Happy to be proved wrong, likewise won't be crowing from the roof tops if my outcome of BR's demise comes true.

    Greatly heartened by the number of points we can now agree on ;-)

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  183. For the record, the people who are responsible for the current Sterling fiasco in order of blame:

    1. Sterling
    2. Agent
    3. BR

    The point I was making was that as the manager, BR should have kept Sterling's feet on the ground, rather than making him think he is God's gift to the world and thereby behaving, and allowing his agent to represent him, in a manner unbecoming of a LFC player.

    My pref, would be not to sell Sterling in this window, bench him in every single game, and then toy with his feelings by bringing him on in the 89th minute of every game to a chorus of boos from both the Kop and home supporters at away games.

    I'd keep this up until the guy learns some humility and honour to play for LFC.

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  184. No. The formation would consist of:

    ........................Migs
    ........................Can
    ................Srktel - Sakho
    ...Clyne - Hendo - Milner - Moreno
    ...........Coutinho - Firmino
    ....................Sturridge

    The premise is that Can would play as a sweeper and bring the ball out of defence, combining effectively with Hendo/Milner going forward. When attacking, one of the three would always act as the DM, hence always have 3 at the back with the CB pair, and potentially having more options/variations in forward play. Critically this would bring the balance to the team between attack and defence. Downside is, should Can be injured we'd need to revert back to a 4-3-3 as no-one else in the LFC squad can play the sweeper role.

    The key difference between this and the 3-5-2 (or variation thereof) is Can/Hendo/Milner need to rotate the DM role, thus not be able to man-marked out of the game - something which was a flaw when SG undertook that role.

    Hark back to the greats of Beckenbaur and Matheus, and I seriously think Can is technically good enough and powerful enough to emulate those players. Any other role for Can in this LFC team would be a travesty and not suit him.

    With your 2-1-3-1-2 formation (you're missing one player!), you'd need a a specialised DM, and that unfortunately is not Can, and which effectively then is the 4-4-2 diamond system in all but name.

    .

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  185. Stats are funny things mate, the stats had Lovren as LFC's best defender last season.. But we know reality to be somewhat different don't we...

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  186. I reckon with a lot of these types friends and family play a large role too its pretty obvious he hasnt had a pin stuck in his head.

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  187. but so does Balo the villain. waiting to see him played with a partner . It appears for every player, there is a credible excuse why they were slack last season

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  188. Thats my point though Case, Sakho appears uncontrolled, but the fact is he is very capable.. It's just the outward appearance that makes people think that... and I know your not that shallow...

    I think the reason those movements are exagerated here, are down to the fact that Rodgers just flat out refuses to give the defence cover in the shape of a DM, and creates a rushed situation...

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  189. Coates might well be good enough to play for Argentina, but we'll never know.

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  190. The stats do not show that Lovren was LFC's best defender last season.

    Those stats come from a study by CIES, which ridiculously uses only 3 stats to judge central defenders: Distribution, recovery, and rigour.

    * There's no consideration of the most important stats for defenders, i.e. tackles, blocks, interceptions, duels (aerial or ground) etc.

    * Distribution is not a defensive quality.

    * What is 'rigour'? Sounds like nonsense to me, and is not quantified or explained in CIES' study notes.

    * The actual stats used to determine the placing are also not divulged.

    It's as ridiculous a conclusion as Sterling being more valuable than Suarez, which is also one of CIES' flawed conclusions.

    Real stats, like those compiled by OPTA, give an accurate picture of effectiveness.

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