With the recent signing of Juan Mata to Manchester United kicking off a reported late January splash in the transfer market, I ask the question of whether it should be of concern that a seventh place club could outspend one of the current top four in the Premier League.
Certainly not for the likes of Manchester City who seem to be able to sign whoever they wish, and certainly not for the likes of Chelsea who simply poach other club’s transfer targets at will.
Arsenal seem to refuse any acknowledgement that their side would benefit from new signings, but they never seem to lack the ability to sign who they prefer.
So that leaves only Liverpool.
My question here simply is whether or not Manchester United signing Juan Mata, and possibly more, should cause concern for a club like Liverpool in the fourth and final position for Champions League qualifications.
In past transfer windows, Liverpool have always made it clear that they will not be pressured into a panic buy, or simply to buy a player because of the transfer window being open. Does this logic standup as the current window looks set to close?
I argue, no.
I understand Liverpool do not want to overpay for players whose clubs’ evaluation may exceed that of theirs. However, if overpaying now seems to be an unwanted luxury, wouldn’t it be a necessity if they miss out on Champions League football?
Chelsea ended up paying 11 million pounds, one million less than requested from Basle, as the club evaluated the player at 12 million. Liverpool were asking for around 7 or 8 million, according to their evaluation. If a player like Salah is 3 or 4 million more than Liverpool’s evaluation during the January transfer window, how much will he fetch during a summer transfer window with no Champions League football in the club’s future, from Liverpool?
So I continue my argument by saying that Liverpool’s transfer policy is not realistic where it concerns the current transfer market, or any future transfer market. I realize the funds may not be available, but where it concerns signing a player like Salah, who could provide immediate impact, matching Chelsea’s resolve may have pushed Liverpool ahead in the standings if not secure a top four finish based on current form.
Bringing my analysis back to Manchester United and Juan Mata …. shouldn’t it be a concern to everyone at Liverpool, if a seventh placed club can outspend your two previous transfer windows with one single purchase of a player?
Perhaps that is the financial reality in world football today? I do not think anyone expects to match the financial power of clubs like Man City or Chelsea or PSG, Real Madrid/Barcelona. If Liverpool don’t compete now, and by now I mean in the next three days, they will regret this opportunity even more if they don’t manage to place in the top four of England’s Premier League at the end of the season.
If that doesn’t create urgency at the club than I don’t know what will, because Luis Suarez won’t stand for it, the fans won’t stand for it, and from a historical perspective, it’s difficult to say whether a player like Mohammed Salah would ever be interested in playing for the Reds at all.
More is at stake for Liverpool in this single transfer window than maybe how they finish the season.