28 Jul 2015

Done Deal: After Anfield nightmare, 'fantastic' €6m Liverpool outcast completes transfer to Marseille

Earlier this month, Atletico Madrid cancelled Javier Manquillo's 2-year loan deal at Liverpool, and publicly criticised the Reds for failing to offer him the game time 'necessary for the purpose of growth'. From January until the end of last season, €6m-rated Manquillo got just 137 minutes of game time, and after signing for Marseille today, the Spaniard indirectly slammed Brendan Rodgers for leaving him to rot on the sidelines.

On July 8th, a statement on Atletico's official website noted

"Atlético decided that he [Manquillo] would go to Liverpool to enjoy the necessary minutes to continue growing football-wise. However, he has not had all the minutes he and our club consider necessary for that purpose".

After signing a loan deal with Marseille on Monday evening, Manquillo - hailed as 'fantastic' by Reds defender Jose Enrique - told the club's official website:

"I am very happy to sign for a prestigious club like Marseille. At Liverpool, I did not get the necessary game time to help with my growth in football".

Manquillo's disappointment is totally justified. Rodgers' basically ignored him for five months of the season, and his decision to grant him just 137 minutes of football (from January to May) is, quite frankly, inexcusable.

If a Liverpool player suffered a similar fate whilst on-loan, then Rodgers et al would be similarly unimpressed.

And it's not as if Manquillo is a terrible player; in the first half of the season, statistics show that he performed as effectively as any other Liverpool defender, so Rodgers' decision to constantly ignore him is hard to justify.

Manquillo is no world-beater, but I submit that he could've done just as good a job as Emre Can on the right side of Liverpool's defence, especially if - like the German - Rodgers handed him a run of 20+ games in a row.

Can was later found-out at right back, yet despite the obvious warning signs, Rodgers persisted with him, and the club suffered the consequences. Manquillo - who is a dedicated right back, and more defensively solid that Can in that position - should've been given a chance.

This is all ancient history now, though. When all is said and done, it's no great loss, but if given a proper chance, Manquillo - labelled (unfairly IMO) as 'poor' by Jamie Redknapp - may have developed into a solid squad player for Liverpool.

Instead, amongst some fans and the media, Manquillo will probably go down as another transfer flop, but the real blame lies with Rodgers, who has once again maintained his pitiful 100% failure rate in the loan market.

It'll be interesting to see how Manquillo performs at Marseille. In many cases, overseas players who leave Anfield generally fail to make an impression elsewhere, but perhaps the Spaniard will buck the trend...?

Author: Jaimie K


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