24 Feb 2012

8 goals a season? Is this Liverpool striker target really worth £30m?

Confirmed Liverpool target Ezequiel Lavezzi showed his class with two goals against Chelsea in the Champions League earlier this week, and I'm sure many Liverpool fans would love to see the Argentinean lining up alongside Luis Suarez at Anfield. In an interview after the Chelsea game, Lavezzi indicated the he is definitely interested in playing in the Premier League at some point, but at a reputed price of £30m, is he worth it?

When asked about the possibility of leaving Napoli at the end of the season, Lavezzi told Eurosport:

"I like La Liga, where there are a lot of strong players, and I particularly admire [Barcelona's Lionel] Messi.

"The Premier League is beautiful too. These are two interesting championships, where every player wants to play in sooner or later.

"It's the beauty of our job that we can discover different cultures and countries. For example, I don't speak English, but one day I'd like to learn it."

Speaking to Radio CalcioMercato last week, South American football expert Jose Alberti revealed the following:

"Ezequiel Lavezzi will definitely leave Naples at the end of the season, but he will not go to Italy; He will move to England and sign for Liverpool".

Yesterday, Lavezzi's Agent, Alejandro Mazzoni, was less emphatic on the subject of his client's future, when he told Radio CRC:

"You cannot talk about the future because there are so many conditions to be assessed. It makes no sense to talk about the market. Lavezzi is fine in Napoli and has a good relationship with both club and team-mates".

In 2009, Mazzoni revealed that former Liverpool manager Rafa Benitez had put in a bid for Lavezzi. He told The Telegraph:

"I reiterate that a Fifa agent presented Napoli with an offer from Liverpool for Lavezzi. This was a formal procedure as the player cannot be contacted directly because he is under contract with Napoli"

Mazzoni recently confirmed that Lavezzi has a buy out clause in his contract, and according to TalkSport, the amount is £30m.

Despite the buzz over Lavezzi, his goalscoring stats are a little concerning, and I'm struggling to see how he's apparently worth £30m:

* 7 goals in 26 games for Napoli this season, which is not dissimilar to Andy Carroll's return of 6 goals in 31 games.

* Only 33 goals scored in the last 134 games.

* Last 5 years, Lavezzi has averaged only 8 goals a season for Napoli.

* Lavezzi has never scored more than 11 goals in one season for Napoli.

If he can't score prolifically in Serie A, which is arguably a weaker league than the Premier League, how likely is it that he will score regularly in England?

Jaimie Kanwar


  1. It might be weaker league overall, but Premier League is more open, which makes many strikers become more prolific compared to their time in Serie A (Henry is one example). I haven't seen Lavezzi playing, so can't judge if he looks like he would be good deal for us, but after last Summer I'm worried about each possible signing under Dalglish and Comolli.

  2. He plays very similarly to Suarez and Tevez.

  3. Times have changed. 
    Back in the 90s, early 00s, it was harder to score in Serie A.

    There are 10 players in PL who have scored 10 or more league goals this season, the same number in Serie A this season. 

    Secondly, Henry played on the wing for Juventus. 

  4. Serie A is weaker league than Premier League but its more difficult to score goals in Serie A compared to EPL because all teams are very defensive. I think Lavezzi is as good as Aguero and can make similar impact in EPL. Lavezzi is not a natural goalscorer, he is more of a no.7 like Suarez but slightly better finisher.

  5. not the type of 'Liverpool' player that we want. Don't waste time.

  6. Serie A is not that defensive any more and illustrated above by Papiss, there isn't much difference between level of difficulty when it comes to scoring in between PL and Serie A these days. 

    Serie A is still slow but the games are more open and lots of space for wing backs/full backs and wide forwards because quite a few Serie A midfields are narrow as seen with the likes of Napoli, Milan, Udinese, Juventus, etc. Serie A has never been about wide midfields I know but tactically, these days, the space left out wide by narrow midfield is more enjoyable for full backs/wing backs and wide forwards (or forwards who drift out wide) (In recent times, Lavezzi, Etoo, Cisse when at Lazio, Zarate, Vucinic, Mancini, etc).

    Definitely isn't as defensive and tactically-intense as it was in the 90s and early part of 2000s. 

  7. just offered 15 million+ kuyt.........

  8. No. He isn't worth 30 million pound.

  9. If we're paying 20mill for Downing and Henderson and £35 mill for Carroll then this lad will be a snip at £80 million.  Let's offer £80 mill and see what happens..........

    Suarez and Kuyt were goal machines in Holland but are poor finishers here.  Robbie kean was deadly for Tottenham and poor for us.  Lets hope that if we do sign Lavezzi we play to his strengths.  Could be a Zola for us.

    Personally I'd sell Carroll and sign Berbatov at the end of the season on a free.  Pairing Berbatov with Suarez or Lavezzi would give us technique up front beyond our wildest dreams if it clicks.

  10. Dream on

    Carroll will come good, he's only match fit now. 9starts in last 13

  11. In 2009 Lavezzi was worth a punt, but let's not kid ourselves, with the financial constraints on the club at the time that never could have been a goer

    City have the money to spend on him, especially if Tevez goes

    We just need decent wingers, maybe a creative player for centre mid, Marko Marin or Wes Houlihan or Stephen Ireland if he gets his head right

  12. Lavezzi is like Suarez he creates more than he scores but he is not wasteful in front of goal at all