1 May 2009

Carlos Tevez: Why signing him would be a huge mistake for Liverpool

Speculation is mounting that Rafael Benitez wants to sign Carlos Tevez from Manchester United. Whilst the Argentinean is a very good player, where exactly would he fit into the team?

I really don’t get the logic in signing Tevez – he is ostensibly a second striker, but that position is well and truly taken at Liverpool by Steven Gerrard. And as good as Tevez is, there is no way he is going to displace Gerrard.

In any event, we have Yossi Benayoun to play Gerrard’s position if the need arises, and the Israeli has proved beyond a shadow of a doubt this season that he can and will step up and take responsibility in Gerrard’s absence.

The same goes for Fernando Torres – Tevez will not displace him and he would be too expensive a player just to be used as a back-up striker.

And as we saw with the Robbie Keane fiasco, changing the team to 442 just to accommodate another striker is a non-starter as it just doesn’t work.

If Tevez doesn’t play up front, that means the only other options are on the wings, but that would mean playing him out of position when we should be trying to sign *specialist* wide players, not putting square pegs in round holes.

Tevez has already made it quite clear that he is sick of sitting on the bench so why would he swap the Old Trafford bench for the Anfield bench, which is inevitably where he would spend a lot of his time?

Admittedly, as a means of irritating Sir Alex Ferguson, signing Carlos Tevez would be a masterstroke par excellence (!), but we shouldn't just be signing players to get one over on Man United.

I think it is clear that the 4231 formation is the only formation that has *consistently* worked under Benitez, so that must not be changed for anything or anyone.

Furthermore, Gerrard and Torres *must* play in their proper positions in as many games as possible and that surely is non-negotiable.

As such, Liverpool should (in my view) only be focusing on buying players for the following positions:

Left midfield/wing
Right midfield/wing
Right back
Back-up striker (Around the £10m price range)

The club needs to find the best specialist right/left midfielders money can buy (within budget) - players with experience who know those positions inside out.

No more money can be wasted on players who will not fit into the system – that means not buying players just because they’re good (i.e. Tevez ) and buying players who will seamlessly slot into the formation.

Albert Riera is an example of the type of player I’m talking about; dedicated left winger who slotted into the team easily. If the club can find players a couple of notches above him in quality to fill out the relevant positions, I really believe the title is up for grabs next season.

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  1. Spot on there Jaimie...

    i have been saying the same thing since i heard of the reports to sign Tevez. great player, but needs to be playing game in game out.. The world has begun to see him as a 2nd striker which i dont think he ever wanted. therefor he has to go to a club who can pay that kind of cash and start him as a striker game in game out.

    The positions that you mentioned for improvement are true. Definately need a left and right winger. Silva still would be my number one choice, and even tho Benitez has been saying recently that the deal is blown due to Silva's 'big mouth' agnet, i still thin khe will be a Liverpool player in the summer.
    I do like the look of Kuba at Berussia Dortmund. Powerful, direct and can also score goals. At the price Dortmund want for him i dont see why not. i would have liked to have Quaresma, but that guy just has attitude issues that i think would eventually end up like another Jermaine Pennant.

    Anyway, enough of the rant. The league is still ours. Man U have won games over dodgy decisions and last minute goals. Yes, you can say that is the way champions play, but how long can it last.

    Come on the Pool!!!

    Blankie :)

  2. i agree with alot of the points BUT why not put gerrard bak into his natural position.and throw tevez jus behind GOD.tevez would do well behind torres without a doubt..and on the plus our midfield would be stronger.doesnt bother me tbh..im more interested in signing wingers.they are our biggest problem.

  3. I disagree. Signing Tevez would give us even more "possibilities" as Benitez would say. And LOVES having lots of them. Tevez would not be like Keane, he had way more skill and control. He could play anywhere across the "3" behind Torres or up front by himself if Torres is injured or rested. Gerrard and Torres CANNOT play every game and we need top quality to slot in when they're not. Tevez is perfect for that role. And even when they are fit, he can still play right, left or as a second striker. This is a no brainer for me. Sign him if at all possible.

  4. @rundlc - What is Gerrard's natural postion - central midfield? I disagree. He is not as effective there as he is playing behind Torres. Gerrard is also not disciplined enough to play in central midfield - he needs a free role so he can roam around without leaving gaps everywhere.

    I would like to see Tevez behind Torres but at the moment, our team is all about accommodating Gerrard. It shouldn't be that way but it is, and whilst it works, we should surely leave things as they are...

  5. the chap is a fighter there are few players like him!He's never beaten till the last whistle that's what we need !no matter where he plays he can score goals and important goals mind u.This is what wins trophies at the end of the day.Liverpool nedds 2 teams to challenge everything .Winning even the league this year won't be enough what we need is dominance of europe and eng.That comes with winners like Tevez!

  6. I agree. I feel Rafa should be a little more frugal in the market this time, and just go for one or two positions. I would love to see him try out some of the reserve team talent that we have. His first priority must be an attacking right back, in the Dani Alves or Cafu mould. That is one position that we've had a lot of problems with. I think all other positions on the pitch have one quality and one good player
    CM - Alonso, Masch, Lucas, Spearing
    LW - Riera, Benny-Onion, Babel
    RW - Kuyt, El Zhar
    ST - Torres, Eggnog
    AM - Gerrard, Benny

    If we really have to go for an attacking player, Rafa should go for someone world class, like Silva or Ribery who can play in 3 positions (AM, LW, RW) and will be a huge boost for the club. Otherwise, Benayoun gets the job done.

  7. I for one would certainly not like to see Tevez at LFC. I could easily fore-go Tevez even if he was available for sub 20m - which he's not. There are some things that LFC shouldn't do; one of them is sign players from Manchester United. I couldn't bear the thought of having one of our players with the prefix: former Manchester United player... Add to that a player who - if we were to win the League with him - would always have won his first medal with Manyoo.

    Let me pose an extreme to make the point. Would anyone ever have Alex Ferguson as next Liverpool manager? Let's assume (not much of an assumption) that you say no - and the reasons would be more to do with not having to rely on an ex-manc for to improve us. Now, how far would you have to dilute your fandom, (or whatever you want to call it) to welcome Alex Ferguson?

    Wouldn't the *acceptance* of signing Tevez, just be a watered-down version our disapproval.

    There would be the goals he scored against us, and old pics of him in a Manc jersey constantly being shown every time we play Utd - and I just couldn't take that. Football fandom is about passion; I could never welcome Carlos Tevez.

    I actually don't hate Utd - we wouldn't be the great club we are without a great rival such as them - I just think that some things are sacred. I can't (and could never) get past the fact that any player could be passionate about playing for them, and them be passionate (which is a pre-requisite) about us. Does not compute! If he was given the choice, who would he rather play for if he had played for both? I don't know and I don't care.

    Apart from anything, I just don't rate him as highly as others do, and I can't see how he would fit in. Roy Keane and Eric Cantona were far better players, and I wouldn't have taken them either. I also wouldn't want to have any dealings again with Jia Joorabchian. I actually quite like him - Alex Ferguson doesn't deserve the commitment that he gets from Tevez.

    We were (I read) making inquiries about Tevez before Torres arrived, and I wasn't that thrilled about the prospect then - even before he wore a Manu shirt.

    We have to welcome new players with open arms and be able to picture them playing in the shirt. It should generate excitement and anticipation like with the signing Torres. Would you go all gooey at the thought of Carlos Tevez holding the obligatory scarf?
    Yeah, exactly!

  8. Kuyt has a free role on the right, he doesn't operate as a right winger.
    Gerrard and Tevez can both perform in this role to a much higher level, as well as through the middle. Unfortunately, since Kuyt is a permanent immovable object on the right, the only other position available is on the left wing, where I don't think Tevez would be a good fit for the team (not his best position and there would be absolutely no width being provided from either wing).
    As such, signing him would be pointless

  9. Letting Gerrard sit a little further back will allow him to influence games a little more. This will stop him being the man to be marked, teams may still put a man on him but thats just going to give more space to the other players.

    Tevez and Torres up front with Gerrard sitting further back will I think be more potent in opening up teams that look to sit there.

  10. What you have to understand are two things:

    - Gerrard and Torres work together so well through sheer athleticism and the directness of their play. That works wonders against teams who will play, but when teams don’t and they come to frustrate, playing a very deep defensive line there is little opportunity to breach them through sheer athleticism. You have to be more patient also and work your way through. This is the obvious argument against why we need another option than the ‘Torres-Gerrard’ partnership.

    - The reason why the “Keane fiasco” unravelled as such was because Torres was injured for such large periods. If you remember back to the Everton, PSV and Man City games there were clear indications of the partnership working – Keane assisting Torres in the first, Torres assisting Keane in the second, and Keane assisting Torres for what should have been a goal, but for the Spaniard to hit wide what appeared a certain goal. Then Torres was injured through November/December and Keane had to play as a lone striker which he couldn’t do tremendously. None of us know the real reason for why Keane fell out of favour but his signing is most definitely not a reason to suggest a striker to partner Torres would not work.

    I would argue we do need someone else to partner Torres at Anfield. Someone technically superb to work in tight spaces, put also the physicality to withstand the pressure put under by defensive teams looking to frustrate. Tevez would work. However, I don’t for a second believe we will be able to afford him.

    In certain games that call for it i would play 4-2-2-2 like we have say against Bolton at Anfield, or sometimes when Keane and Torres played together. I would also play Gerrard on the right-hand side, negating the need for us to buy a right-sided forward/winger. This is a very different role to playing right-midfield where discipline is still very important, so i think he would be more open to performing that position than he might have been in a 4-4-2.

  11. Hang on Jaimie... "Furthermore, Gerrard and Torres *must* play in their proper positions in as many games as possible and that surely is non-negotiable."

    I'm sorry, but isn't this praise for Gerrard (of a kind)? Aren't you the guy who thinks we should sell Gerrard for a tuppence to the first interested shopper? Isn't he the uninspirational, not-very-good captain that you'd love to see fall on his ar$e?

    Why oh why *must* he play in as many games as possible? Please could you explain your twisted logic?