Memphis Depay: Not the First One That Got Away From Liverpool
Another season reaches its twilight phase, and it seems a new transfer window is already dawning on us.
And what comes with another transfer window? Yet more players opting a move somewhere other than Anfield despite interest from Liverpool.
This transfer window hasn’t even opened yet, and it seems the pattern is still unrelenting; ‘Memphis Depay holds talks with Rodgers’, they suggested; ‘Liverpool lead the race’ they rumoured; ‘Depay signs for Manchester United’, they confirmed.
So now seems a particularly apt time to look at some of the other ‘stars’ to turn down Merseyside.
The world cup saw many players fast tracked to stardom. This may not be the right tag for Sanchez, who was already well known following his time at Barcelona; what the world cup did do for the Chilean however, was attract attention from clubs begging him to be their star man. Principal among those clubs vying for his signature were Liverpool and Arsenal. What perhaps hurts most about Alexis’ decision for London over Liverpool is just how perfect his joining could have been. Having lost a South American striker to Barca, bringing one the other way would have probably been the best the Reds could have hoped for. 12 months down the line and both of those South Americans have excellent scoring records and Balotelli has scored 2 tap ins and a penalty.
Willian/ Mohammad Salah
It was not so long ago a very different winger opted for a London club ahead of Liverpool; but this one was not coming off the back of a world cup, and nor was he at a prestigious club prior to his Premier League move. Russian club Anzi were going through a fairly odd time: selling all their stars within a very short time period – ideal timing for the Reds to snap up long standing target Willian. Alas, once again it was not to be for Liverpool, where in a sudden twist of events the Brazillian went from Liverpool to Tottenham to Chelsea in what felt like a matter of minutes. But he was not the most recent winger to do this; in what appeared a mirror of the events six months earlier, Mohammad Salah was so heavily linked with Liverpool it was reported he was on his flight to Merseyside when he got the call from Jose Mourinho and turned his plane for London. Albeit Salah’s transfer didn’t quite work out as expected, this shows yet more evidence of Liverpool failing to get deals over the line.
Speaking of not quite getting deals over the line, it doesn’t take an incredible memory to recall January deadline day of last season; I remember it particularly well: Ian Ayre out in Ukraine just finalising a deal for a promising winger who’d shown over multiple seasons he was more than worth the £13 or so million Liverpool were ready to pay. But between getting lost finding the place of negotiation and the owner of Dynamo Kiev changing his mind the deadline ticked over and so ended Liverpool’s hopes of a signing that January. I remember distinctly the fan consensus; now we’ll drop out the top four and challenge for nothing once again. The Reds went on to finish second as part of the most exciting season in recent years; oh how I loved being wrong.
So, now that Depay has slipped through the evidently weak grip of the Liverpool transfer committee, I can only hope that I am once again wrong, and that Depay, like Konoplyanka before him, is not the key to a good Liverpool season.
But then, the alternative to Yevhen was SAS (Suarez and Sturridge); the alternative to Memphis is BAB (Balotelli and Borini).