13 Mar 2014

Transfer Surprise? BR wants 'exceptional' £16m-rated legend to replace LFC star.

After a period of erratic form over the Christmas period, Liverpool goalkeeper Simon Mignolet seems to have recovered his confidence, and he's once again putting in good performances for the Reds. Despite that, though, it appears that Brendan Rodgers still has his eye on signing another top-class goalkeeper, with outgoing Barcelona 'keeper Victor Valdes back on the radar.

Last year, The Mirror, claimed that Brendan Rodgers was planning a summer move for Valdes, and that Barca would listen to offers 'of around £16m'.

Valdes decided to stay at Barca, but in February, Spanish newspaper Sport claimed that:

* LFC were negotiating with Barca over a possible summer move for Valdes.
* The Reds had made a new offer for the Spanish stopper.
* LFC's scouts watched Valdes in action during Barca's 2-0 victory over Real Sociedad.

Well, according to The Guardian today:

"Liverpool will attempt to shore up their decidedly porous defence by replacing the occasionally flappy Simon Mignolet with Víctor Valdés, who long ago announced his intention to leave Barcelona this summer. ".

Valdes is definitely leaving the Nou Camp, and Barca boss Gerardo Martino confirmed this recently, when he told ESPN:

“He [Valdes] is in exceptional form, but there’s no chance of him renewing his contract.”

When asked about his future the week, Valdes heaped praise on the Premier League. He raved:

"It is one of the biggest leagues in the world, with the best clubs in the world and, without doubt, it's a very good option for me"

Signing Valdes would certainly shake things up at Anfield, and his arrival would inevitably threaten Mignolet's position as LFC's number one goalkeeper. After all, the Spaniard is one of the most experienced elite 'keepers in the world, and he's won 19 trophies in the last 11 years. Mignolet is a comparative pauper. This news comes as no real surprise, though, as LFC's goals conceded ratio has not really improved with Mignolet between the sticks.

* After 28 league games last season, Pepe Reina had conceded 34 goals.
* This season, Mignolet has conceded 35 in 28.
* Only 7 more 'keepers in the Prem have conceded more than Mignolet.

Brendan Rodgers probably expected a more pronounced positive impact, but but the stats don't lie; the plain fact is that Mignolet is barely more solid than Reina. Yes, he's also saved the Reds a few points this season, but he doesn't seem to be able to maintain the kind of form required of a Champions league club.

If this story is true, and Rodgers is genuinely trying to bring-in Valdes, I don't see how this can be anything other than a vote of no-confidence in Mignolet. You don't bring in one of the world's most high-profile, decorated goalkeepers to sit on the bench, and I sincerely doubt Valdes plans to spend the next stage of his career playing a vastly-reduced number of games.

If Liverpool qualify for the Champions League, signing Valdes - who is available for free this summer - would be a massive statement of intent, but it could also be the first nail in Mignolet's Anfield coffin.

Anfield legend Steve Nicol is not convinced by Valdes, however. Discussing the Spaniard on ESPN last year, the former Reds defender observed:

"The grass isn’t always greener, and wherever he [Valdes] goes, he’ll have a hell of a lot more work to do than he does at Barcelona. I personally don’t think he’s that great of a goalkeeper, so just be careful what you wish for"

Is Valdes the better option?




  1. B Rodgers needs to bring in a class good goalkeeper to compete and cover S Mignolet(25) for the next 4-6 years at the club.

    So either A Mccarthy(24) Of Reading or M Vorm(30) Of Swansea should be brought to the club in the summer for £4-£7M

  2. Whoever thinks LFC will sign Valdes need to catch a wake up.

  3. No stats don't exactly lie but they don't tell the whole truth either. You cannot compare one set of stats with another unless all the other variables are also the same and in football they never are. Two key differences are . that Reina played with a different back 4 (with less changes) and Liverpool played a different style of football.

  4. Somebody do the counts, we are going to sign around 70 players this summer YES!

  5. 70 first team players I hope.

  6. First we are going to get rid of our whole current first team!!!

    Then we are going to sign all these players with the strangest names on earth and not forgetting Valdes of course!

  7. Well seen as you copied and pasted half your last piece about Valdes to pad out this blog, I'm gonna copy n paste my comment from it

    "Nooooooo. Valdes is, and indeed always was, a poor keeper. He jus had the benefit of playing behind a team so incredibly adept at keeping the ball, in what is essentially been a one team league. Quite frankly, I could have kept goal for that Barca team. Medal count means very little in assessing a player's individual ability, as Djimi Traore and John O'Shea could attest to, to name but a few. Shay Given, for 10 years, was a genuinely world class goalkeeper who's never won a single medal. Truth is, even with recent mistakes, Mignolet, in his current room to improve status, is a better keeper then Valdes ever was."

  8. I'm sorry...but once again, with the similarity in goals conceded over two keepers in two seasons, the fault would appear to be with the back 4 and the DM area and not necessarily with the GK.

  9. Just like the article you wrote the other day about Redknapp saying that we would win the title with Chelsea;s back four.

    I want to see Petr Cech doing as well as he has with how our back four has been defending this season.

  10. Yes, the stats of Mignolet this year vs. Reina last year are similar, however...

    Mignolet has saved us points this year. Reina cost us points last year (i.e. at Citeh).

  11. We should think aout signing the Napoli goalie. His distribution is quick and accurate and would work really well with SSS.

  12. And in the exact same style of play that we are currently employing

  13. Wishful thinking... unless a player is alright with being a backup, why would he come here unless he's going to start?

    McCarthy or Vorm wouldn't come unless we told them from the outset that they are starting. Same with Valdez.

    And it was the same last year with Mignolet.

  14. The thing is, there are only a handful really really good goalkeepers in the world. Mignolet nor Valdes are amongst them. It's arguably the most difficult position on the pitch because every little mistake can lose you a match. Strikers can not win you a match but a goalkeeper actually loses. The way I see it, you don't replace a 24 year old with an almost retired GK if you seriously want to build for the future. That said, Schmeichel and Van der Sar played till they were nearly 40 so there may be a couple of years left in Valdes while we wait to sign the next Thibaut Courtois.

  15. Theycallmemrburt8:19 pm, March 13, 2014

    I have a sneaky one we'll be back in for Gylfi Sigurdsson on the cheap. He's not even on the bench tonight looks like Sherwood had him in mind with his outburst after the Chelsea whooping ..... 4m Rodgers is probably licking his lips.

  16. Theycallmemrburt8:22 pm, March 13, 2014

    YES, Mignolet has made one or two mistakes BUT Reina has been so poor for four or five YEARS yet the bulk of fans only remember his good times. Mignolet has made more saves for us this season than I have seen since Grobelaar. The rest of his game will improve under BR, I have no doubt.

  17. Theycallmemrburt8:23 pm, March 13, 2014

    I see what you did there.... :) ........ but NO!

  18. If we are in the Champions League, and if we are truly intent on upgrading over Mignolet, I don't see why we wouldn't be in the running.

    We'd be competing with other top teams in the Champions League, and odds are he'd only go to France, Italy, England, Germany, or Spain.

    His options would be further limited because one of those teams from one of those countries would also need to be looking to replace their current keeper.

    So for him to even consider it, he'd need the following:

    1. One of those 5 countries
    2. Champions League
    3. High Wage
    4. Starting Position

    How many of those 16-20 teams can provide numbers 2-4? My guess is it's less than 5.

  19. Can't see there being any truth in this. The wages he'll be commanding will be at least as much as reina and that has been widely reported as one of the main factors in moving pepe on. In my opinion, mignolet should be provided competition either in the form of a good up and coming keeper like butland or a top keeper in the final 2-3 years of his career. I thought Julio Cesar would have been a good move before he left QPR cos at 36, mig could've learned from him, knowing it would only be a matter of time before he succeeded him. With valdes only being 32, I can't see him retiring any time soon

  20. Mignolet cost us points at city and Chelsea this season. He's been solid more fort than not tho. Defence more to blame than the goalies in my opionion

  21. Nope nope nope nope nope nope nope nope nope and nope. Can't wait for Valdes to join a team that doesn't defend as a unit so the world can finaly see what an average player he is.
    Would rather try and mould someone like Migs than deal with Valdes who thinks he's one of the world's elite

  22. And when I look back to the Southampton and Stoke games in particular, I'd say he saved us points.

    And in terms of the Chelsea & City games, I lay those much more at the hands of the ref and linesman than I do at Mignolet... though he definitely should have made the save on the shot that rolled in off his hand. It was poor on his part.

  23. I agree with Nicol on this one, it just so happen that he was part of a Barcelona team that has won that many titles, it's reputation by association.

  24. Agree. As long as we are as atrocious on set pieces and in the air as we are, then it hardly matters who is in there. The only time Skrtel defends corners well is when he has ahold of somebody's shirt. Valdes' wages will also be a problem and will keep us from signing better players to get through the 4 seasons we may have next season. Nope Brad Jones is just going to have to get better. Maybe we need to send the number three kid out on loan with a clause that says we get him back if one of our other keepers goes down.

  25. Goals are not all about the keeper. A meaningful stat might be how many goals he has conceded directly because of mistakes. Everything else depends on the team. If the team is defensively poor then goals will be conceded, often the keeper can't do anything about that. Reina's best years were when he had a Benitez-modelled team in front of him. Every player was shackled to a pre-defined role that was so precise and controlled - our defence was brilliant. Things are different under Rodgers and it seems our defence is actually getting worse. I wouldn't attribute that to Mignolet, I think our tactics are just so flat out attacking that we leak goals. Rodgers needs to find the right balance.

    If Valdes wants to come here then I'd welcome him, but it just doesn't fit. He'd have to take a pay cut and we've resolved ourselves to letting Pepe go. Why would he come here and why would Rodgers want him? If we don't want Pepe why would we want Valdes? He'd provide great competition and I'd love to see two world class keepers fighting it out but we had that opportunity when we had Pepe and Mignolet both on the books and Rodgers sent one of them away on loan. If he didn't keep them both then why replicate that situation again? Why not just bring back Pepe for the end of his contract?

  26. Based on his comments, I'd be very surprised if he doesn't end up at Monaco. He's spoken about wanting to get away from the pressure of Barca, so earning huge wages in a desirable location (for some) at a club with a relatively small amount of fan pressure that wants to sign some stars, seems to be in everyone's best interests.

  27. I agree with you partially, but I think Reina was shot by the time we got rid of him. He's been reasonably gaffalicious at Napoli.

  28. Could have gotten a drubbing in the first derby without Mig as well.

  29. He looks like he is always licking his lips. Needs to get a chap-stick.

  30. Why is Valdes valued at 16 million? When Reina who was preferred keeper to Valdes in the spanish side behind Casillas and he is only worth 4 to 6 million.
    Something stinks here if this turns out to be the case.

  31. couldn't agree more. should just keep Pepe. Don't bother hunting keepers we have 2 very good ones already.

  32. Isn't there a decent keeper in the academy?

  33. Michael Blankson4:43 am, March 14, 2014

    A goal keeper is only as good as his defence, IMO.
    How many times since his Mignolet arrived this season, have we played a consistent defence? Rogers has only played the same defence in THREE consecutive games (when Mignolet was in goal).

    And as Jaimie mentioned, he has saved us a lot of points this season.
    Personally, I think Mignolet will get better with time, where he gets more commanding and vocal to his back 4.

  34. If we are going to bring in another goalie,i think foster from celtic would be a good buy.cant believe none of the big teams havent gone in for him yet!

  35. I honestly cannot think that we have signed Mignolet to be a bench warmer. If that was the case then Reina would never have been sent on loan and would still be first choice.

  36. I don't see the point in bringing in an older keeper to replace a younger one. Yes he may be a little better. But who will be playing a no1 in a few years. Why stunt the development of a younger keeper, who lets be honest isn't exactly rubbish.
    Valdes as back up, but I doubt he would want that.

  37. Ward has been given some first team duties in pre-season.
    Mersin has been playing decently in the U21s since Feb.

  38. Needs to drink more water.

  39. M Vorm(30) and A Mccarthy(24) would come to compete with Mignolet(25. We would have two good goalkeepers competing with one another all season. And hopefully next season we will be competing in 4 competitions and be able to field a class good quality Gk in every competition.

    M Vorm(30) or A Mccarthy(24) will come to Liverpool if we make Champions league football, no matter what as they would have chance to play in something they will never ever have chance of playing in with current sides.

  40. for me, reina>>>>valdes any day......

    btw JK, can u compare the current wages of both....?

  41. I happen to agree with you.

    I personally don't think that we will sign a new goalkeeper, as I think Mignolet has played well overall this year. I lay most of the blame at the feet of our discombobulated defense.

    All I'm saying is that if we wanted Valdes, it's not a far fetched idea considering who we'd be competing with for his signature.

  42. Alex McCarthy will come in the summer if we make a move for him. The chance of cup runs to Wembley, the odd Prem game, getting to train with world class players and trips to European giants (albeit on the bench) plus double the wages...or stay with Reading.

    Not rocket science.

  43. That's my point... They wouldn't want to come here to compete for the starting job. They'd want to come here with the starting job in hand.

    I don't deny that there may be lots of games to play next year. My point is merely that they want to be the number 1 guy. Not 1A or 1B.

  44. Pepe Reina & Brad Jones out, Alex McCarthy in.

    If we wanna stop haemorrhaging goals, sort out the defence.

  45. Both of them players would not the chance to play for Liverpool, once the club play in Champions league. If B Rodgers goes for either, they would come to club. As if they become hit and perform better than Mignolet(25) they will start ahead of Mignolet(25) and that would offer up the chance for them to become International regulars. And them having the chance to play in Champions league alone would sway them to club, whilst club in on rise also. B Rodgers should bring in A Mccarthy(24) Of Reading to compete with Mignolet (25)

    If we are in 4 competitions next season, injury and suspension could effect choice. So i am sure Mignolet and Mccarthy would both play a descent amount of games in the league, europe and the cups.