13 Feb 2014

'I made mistakes': £16m 'class act' admits he almost quit LFC after nightmare year

After enduring a miserable campaign last season, Liverpool defender Martin Skrtel is in imperious form this year, and continues to set a great example to the club's young players with his superb 'can-do' attitude, and positive approach to overcoming adversity. The Slovakian almost jumped-ship last summer, though, and he's confirmed this once again in a new interview today.

Speaking to the official LFC Independent, Skrtel conceded that last season 'wasn't the best' for him, and admitted that he 'made a few mistakes and cost us some points'. He further added:

"I would be lying if I didn't say I was thinking [about leaving]. After the six years I spent here it was not easy to say 'OK, I'm leaving'. I decided to stay and fight for my place, and it is working"

Despite his great form, Daniel Agger still seems to be the more popular of the two. I recently conducted a survey on the site asking fans to choose who they'd prefer to see sold:

- 11250 visitors (approx) voted.
- 68% of participants voted for Skrtel to be sold.
- Only 32% voted for Agger.

That's an emphatic result, yet hardly surprising given Agger's enduring popularity amongst Liverpool fans. I personally disagree with the outcome of the poll, however. I voted for Agger, and did so for the following reasons:

* Skrtel is strong and robust, and like Luis Suarez, he rarely gets injured.
* Agger is always injured, and the next big injury could be a career-killer.
* LFC now have Sakho to fill the left-sided centre-half role.
* Skrtel is in superb form, whereas Agger has continued to make costly mistakes.

* Agger also makes veiled threats in the media about his future, whereas Skrtel - despite being unceremoniously dropped last season - never seems to engage in media oneupmanship.

Given his excellent form, there will, inevitably, be interest in Skrtel over the summer. Zenit St. Petersburg and Napoli have been linked with £16m moves over the last year, and if a club comes in with a huge offer, will Rodgers let him go?

It seems silly to suggest, but Skrtel - described yesterday by Brendan Rodgers as a 'class act' is basically in the shop window right now, and I wouldn't put it past Rodgers to cash-in if presented with the opportunity to make a huge profit. After all, Skrtel may be having a great season, but he's shown in the past that things can go pear-shaped pretty quickly.

Is it a case that Skrtel is just going through a sustained period of good form, or has he actually improved and progressed, to the extent he is now a better all-round player than in the past?

I hope it's the latter, and I personally want Skrtel to stay. Good centre-halves are hard to find these days, and right now, the Slovakian is one of the best and most consistent defenders out there.



  1. Been very good this season, in saying that if a big enough offer came in id at least have the conversation. Someone has to partner sakho

  2. I think he's just too prone to costly mistakes from game to game, I feel he's scored more own goals than goals in his LFC career. I think he'd be fine as the #2 CB on an EPL-winning side but not the leader of the defense. I keep hoping Agger will stay healthy and perform up to his potential but it just hasn't happened yet and Sakho could be another possibility but as it stands he seems to be a great option for depth should we be in the CL next year. For now though, he is definitely improved in Rogers' system and that has helped us a lot so my complaints are at a minimum really for the moment.

  3. He is 29 and is at the height of his powers. If BR were to sell it would be because of his age and the FSG philosophy, which in his case would be a mistake. Youth and energy are great but a great defender needs to have a vast wealth of experience.

  4. Well it wasn't Gerrard sliding through the mud for a late winner but you were close enough. It was Gerrard with his balls of steel jingling slotting home a penalty. I doubt you were able to keep quiet then ;)

  5. It's a difficult one because Kolo clearly cares and has lots of good attributes . Unfortunately, his first job is to defend and errors like he has made lately have to be sorted

  6. I think he has done really well to come back and he has surprised me . I think of Hansen as the type of CB that I like to see in a Liverpool side but they are few and far between. I don't see him as a good fit for BRs play the ball out from the back philosophy. Maybe though, Sakho can be the classy one and we can afford to have a reasonably solid, effective performer like Skrtel alongside.

  7. Honestly I voted to keep Agger over Skrtel. My reasoning was that Agger seemed to fit more into the mould of Rodgers style of play. Good technically and comfortable playing from the back, where as Skrtel seemed to struggle a bit with this last year.
    Ask me now and he has changed my mind. Not simply because of his top performances (that's a part of it) but more so that he stayed in the team. The easy option was clearly there for him, accept it and move on to another club, collecting transfer bonuses and probably an improved wage packet along the way. But he chose to take the hard route, fight for his place, work to improve his game and prove all the doubters like me wrong.

    I don't know if this period of form is a permanent or temporary thing, but that kind of attitude cannot be trained into you or bought in the transfer market. It's that kind of determination that will, in the end, win out and win trophies for the team.

    I'm glad to have been proven wrong and hope he stays over the summer to see us in the CL and also help us to the trophy we all really want next year.
    Fair play Skrtel, you deserve your spot you fought for.

  8. Another Jason Carr...

  9. Settle down mate, Rodgers needs to win something before he can be considered on Mourinho's level. Has he got the talent though? It seems he does.

  10. Nice. Glad you enjoyed it :-) Sturridge is indeed a top, top player. Agree with you re Thierry Henry. I've also seen him play live quite a few times, and the guy was a genius striker.

  11. Arguably we have our top back 4 all coming back from injury. There is hope of improvement which will be needed if we are to continue to compete in the top 4.

  12. The so called FSG policy is not that older players need to be sold. It is that they have they be bought young at reasonable prices. Apart from it being total rubbish as they don't act like that in the transfer market, they also seem to forget they paid a lot more for Jordan Henderson than they did for Charlie Adam.

  13. When we win the league, last night's penalty will be seen as the defining moment in our season.

  14. This and cissokho intervening to defend his team mate in the ar5ena1 match proves there is a sense of camaraderie and togetherness in the team even with the fringe players! I dont remember seeing this before. Team mates fighting for each other. I love it. Hope this team spirit keeps growing and keep propelling us higher and higher...YNWA

  15. I'm glad we have Hendo. Never thought Adam was worth a crap...stil don't. He was SG without the talent.