13 Sept 2016

Collymore raves: 'Exciting' £33m attacker Liverpool tried to sign can be like 'Drogba'

After dispatching the Premier League champions with relative ease over the weekend, Liverpool face another massive test against Chelsea on Friday, and according to ex-Red Stan Collymore, one-time Reds target Michy Batshuayi could be a big player for the Blues.

In April, ESPN claimed that Liverpool were 'leading the race' to sign Batshuayi, but the Belgian striker ended up signing for Chelsea in a £33m deal.

Time will tell if Liverpool missed out here, but in his column for The Mirror this week, Collymore claimed that Batshuayi has the talent to match one of Chelsea's Premier League legends:

"Batshuayi [can] be the Didier Drogba figure they’ve been looking for. He has the physicality and belief to help him [achieve that]".

Batshuayi is yet to start a game for Chelsea this season, but even with limited game time, his minutes-per-goal/assist stats are already formidable:

* 3 goals/1 assist in 5 apps (122 minutes played overall)

* Goal/assist every 30 minutes.

Is Batshuayi as Jurgen Klopp-type player? Amid a barren spell last season, Marseille boss Michel moaned:

"He [Batshuayi] lacked mobility and understanding of the game. We're working on it with him, but we must rely on his commitment".

Batshuayi grabbed 33 goals/assists in 45 games for Marseille last season, but Ligue One is a one-horse is one-horse race and is nowhere near as tough or competitive as the Premier League. Additionally, like with Benteke and Balotelli, there are question marks over Batshuayi's mobility and work-rate, and these qualities are non-negotiable under Klopp.

Ultimately, with fellow Belgian (and Ligue One alumnus) Divock Origi already at Anfield, it would've been pointless (IMO) to spend £30m+ on Batshuayi, who is arguably a very similar player.

Here's hoping Batshuayi doesn't put Liverpool to the sword on Friday.

* Hailed by Gary Cahill as 'exciting and powerful'


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