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Asmir Begović (GK) - Stoke

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i_still_miss_fowler

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Begovic, 25, has been linked with a move to Anfield to replace Pepe Reina this summer – should the Spaniard return to Barcelona.

Sarajevo-based paper Dnevni Avaz report “that everything has been arranged and is waiting for a signature”.
They claim that Begovic wishes to start pre-season at Liverpool on July 10th, but that Arsenal are still interested in negotiating a deal for the highly-rated Bosnian shot stopper.

Begovic signed for Stoke from Portsmouth in 2010. The Potters, who parted company with manager Tony Pulis today, have already signed England under-21 keeper Jack Butland from Birmingham as a replacement for Begovic.
Winger Stewart Downing has previously been linked with a move in the opposite direction in any deal for Begovic
http://www.thisisanfield.com/2013/05/reports-begovic-to-liverpool-arranged-pending-reina-departure/
The Telegraph are running with Begovic stating "I want to start preparing on July 10, with all the players of Liverpool.”


So I think this transfer looks definitely on the cards. Cant say I am overly impressed and it signals Pepe's departure. Certainly not a bad keeper, but I dont think he is a great one either.
 


gasband

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i_still_miss_fowler said:
The Telegraph are running with Begovic stating "I want to start preparing on July 10, with all the players of Liverpool.”


So I think this transfer looks definitely on the cards. Cant say I am overly impressed and it signals Pepe's departure. Certainly not a bad keeper, but I dont think he is a great one either.
You can want all you want! But in life, You do not know always get what you want!!!! I WANT Reina to stay! :ph34r:
 

RichLFC

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He's alright. Big guy a 6 foot 5 and may handle set plays better than Reina. Not got his distribution but he's solid enough to do a fair job

Last bit, I hope if this deal materialises that it is true. Can't wait to see Downing booted out, his mediocrity will continue to hold us back if he stays, we need winners for senior players, stoke is more his level

Get shot of him and it may make this deal look halfway decent n the circumstances. Some players I just think mentally don't belong at big clubs. Begovic is tough enough I think but can't wait to fuck off some of the pansies in the processing at all possible

Personally I would choose in an ideal world to retain Reina and palm off Downing to stoke but begovic would not be a terrible replacement, been around long enough to know what's what
 

Cortez

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The Telegraph are running with Begovic stating "I want to start preparing on July 10, with all the players of Liverpool.”


So I think this transfer looks definitely on the cards. Cant say I am overly impressed and it signals Pepe's departure. Certainly not a bad keeper, but I dont think he is a great one either.
I think some, and I've been guilty of it myself, are swayed by how good Pepe was three years ago. I like him very much, but he has declined massively. His stats over the last three years had been getting steadily worse, at one point having the worst shot to save ratio in the league, until Barca appeared interested.

Begovic has a much better attitude, I think. He's a much better shot stopper than Reina, and way more commanding. He's good with his feet, too. Maybe not quite as good as Reina, but good. I think he has been as good as anybody in the league over the last season or two. It's a significant upgrade, in my opinion.
 

Hinold_Arnold

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He is a good shot-stopper, but I am just not sure if he fits us or not. We, of course, need a good shot-stopper, but what Pepe offers us is something more. Pepe plays like a sweeper as well, which to my belief is the reason why we can play a high defensive line, and it should be what Rodgers want to do as well. Begovic certainly doesn't show his ability in this aspect as Stoke plays a low defensive line most of the time with two big men always staying in front of him as the barrier. This is my major concern over Begovic.
 



Cortez

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We don't play a high defensive line, mate. The gap between the defence and midfield is one of the major obstacles Rodgers needs to address in this coming season.

I know it's heresy to talk about certain members of the club like I just did, but we're starting a new era now. We had Dudek in the first year of Rafa's era, we upgraded. I think we can do something similar now.
 

DeathOrGlory

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Being able to stop the shots on goal are most important in a keeper, obviously.

I think having Pepe being awesome at distributing a few years ago is clouding our vision a bit. So what if Begovic can't throw it with pin point accuracy? He can kick it to an outfield player who can.

Think by getting this guy we'd stop conceding the soft near post goals etc Pepe's been doing lately. Don't want him to leave, but this guy would be a great addition.
 

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Well, if that happens and he plays back-up to Reina next season, I'll applaud this move. If Pepe leaves however, and Begovic becomes our new main goalkeeper, it will signal another downwards step.
 

Nikola

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To be honest, systems and formations aside, Begović is much more suited to English football than Reina. I like his strength, his reflexes, the sheer presence that he provides to the box. His distribution isn't that good but he can improve, he's, what, 25? We'll see what happens, I'm pretty sure he is not the only goalkeeper our scouts have watched/are watching. I would also be happy with his signature because we would finally have someone to rival Inter in terms of having a bloody handsome goalie!


Hope in your heart said:
Well, if that happens and he plays back-up to Reina next season, I'll applaud this move. If Pepe leaves however, and Begovic becomes our new nr.1, it will signal another downwards step.
Why, mate? You don't rate him that highly or you had someone else in mind as Pepe's replacement?
 

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Nikola13 said:
(...)

Why, mate? You don't rate him that highly or you had someone else in mind as Pepe's replacement?
I don't rate him too highly, but in that respect, I may be uninformed. However, I mainly want Pepe to stay, both for his ability (higher than Begovic imo) and for his influence in the dressing room.

If Pepe wants to leave to Barca, I'd rather we were looking towards a potential world-class keeper who can develop with this squad which is very much a work in progress. I.e, I'd prefer us to be linked with Ter Stegen, Zieler, Sommer or another genuine talent in that ilk.

Begovic just doesn't strike me as anything exceptional, but I'll be happy to be educated on that part by more knowledgeable posters than me.
 



i_still_miss_fowler

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Cortez said:
I think some, and I've been guilty of it myself, are swayed by how good Pepe was three years ago. I like him very much, but he has declined massively. His stats over the last three years had been getting steadily worse, at one point having the worst shot to save ratio in the league, until Barca appeared interested.

Begovic has a much better attitude, I think. He's a much better shot stopper than Reina, and way more commanding. He's good with his feet, too. Maybe not quite as good as Reina, but good. I think he has been as good as anybody in the league over the last season or two. It's a significant upgrade, in my opinion.

They are different types of keepers.

Begovic good and commanding at crosses (catches rather than punches), quick reactions to stop shots.
Pepe better at positioning and is far more likely to hold onto the ball (rather than divert the ball away from shots/spill the ball). Better distribution as well.

Attitude Pepe wins hands down, he would never refuse to play (like Begovic did). I think we hugely underestimate importance of Pepe in the dressing room. Look behind the scenes of Spanish national team, or even slight insights from the club tv channel he is central to the atmosphere.
 

LFCLV

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i_still_miss_fowler said:
he is central to the atmosphere.
This is what worries me. You don't replace just a player but leader in the dressing room. We have already lost Carra. If we make mayor changes to our squad, then it will be hard to finish in the top 4.
 

Cortez

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i_still_miss_fowler said:
They are different types of keepers.

Begovic good and commanding at crosses (catches rather than punches), quick reactions to stop shots.
Pepe better at positioning and is far more likely to hold onto the ball (rather than divert the ball away from shots/spill the ball). Better distribution as well.

Attitude Pepe wins hands down, he would never refuse to play (like Begovic did). I think we hugely underestimate importance of Pepe in the dressing room. Look behind the scenes of Spanish national team, or even slight insights from the club tv channel he is central to the atmosphere.
I'd say Begovic has better positioning. Actually, I think Pepe's positioning is quite often woeful. It's part of the reason he gets beaten at his near post so often. Whilst I agree about Pepe in the changing rooms, we don't really know what Begovic is like. When I said attritude, I really meant desire to keep goals out. Hands down, for me.

There's a reason why United, Chelsea, and Arsenal have been sniffing around him; he's bloody excellent. I feel like we're about to sign the next VdS, but people don't realise it. The Mancs didn't realise it before they signed VdS, either.
 

rippedshorts

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Judging from the limited time I've watched Asmir Begovic, hands down he's a better keeper than Reina is. One thing that cannot be overlooked about Reina's ability is his distribution qualities; however, even when his form picks up for a couple of games this season, I still think that Begovic is a better shot stopper and a more commanding presence on defence. As it stands now, rationally I'll take Begovic over Reina any day.

With that said however, I'm sure Begovic has enough ability to play for clubs bigger than ours, and the impact that Reina has on our dressing room will be sorely missed.
 

Nikola

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Hope in your heart said:
I don't rate him too highly, but in that respect, I may be uninformed. However, I mainly want Pepe to stay, both for his ability (higher than Begovic imo) and for his influence in the dressing room.

If Pepe wants to leave to Barca, I'd rather we were looking towards a potential world-class keeper who can develop with this squad which is very much a work in progress. I.e, I'd prefer us to be linked with Ter Stegen, Zieler, Sommer or another genuine talent in that ilk.

Begovic just doesn't strike me as anything exceptional, but I'll be happy to be educated on that part by more knowledgeable posters than me.
Pepe is, in my opinion, the most talented goalkeeper in Europe in terms of what he can do with the ball and how he can land it on your eyebrow even if you're sixty metres away from him. However, I'm fairly convinced that he will go to Barcelona as reportedly all parties wouldn't have problem with that happening.

When it comes to his replacement, at first I wanted someone like Mignolet, who is a carbon copy of Pepe in a lot of aspects, but I was thinking and after watching our defenders failing to deal with set-pieces and Pepe flapping at crosses, I thought that we needed a change in that aspect, that we should buy a 'keeper who is strong and tall, who has long hands and excellent reflexes.

Now, Begović falls well into that category. I've watched him while he was still at Portsmouth and I remember commenting on him with my friend - he really looked impressive back then for a young 'keeper who wasn't a product of some famous academy or playing for ultra-strong national team. When Stoke got him, I knew that it would be a great move for them and three years later, it seems that I've been right about it. I knew that he would become a good goalie but I honestly didn't think that he would become this good.

Another positive aspect of him is his personality. He's said to be a great guy, funny, witty, outgoing, great teammate, loyal. He grew up in Canada but wanted to represent the country of his origin. He could be much more vocal on the pitch, though (even though Stoke's defence rarely looked disorganised), but there is plenty of time for him to improve on certain aspects of his game where I feel he lags behind Pepe. I tend to forget he's my age!

So, if you ask me, Begović has potential to turn into a world class goalkeeper. To summarise, this is a goalkeeper who is vastly superior to Reina in terms of aerial and box domination, handling, body frame (which allows him to be better in one-on-one situations that probably every PL goalkeeper) and inferior in terms of passing the ball, throwing and kicking. He is also five years younger.

You can choose which type of goalkeeper you like - I prefer the one that prevents the ball from crossing the goal line. In these terms, Begović is probably the best goalkeeper in Premier League. If we were buying in PL, I'd buy him even over Mignolet - I rate him that highly.
 



Cortez

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rippedshorts said:
With that said however, I'm sure Begovic has enough ability to play for clubs bigger than ours, and the impact that Reina has on our dressing room will be sorely missed.
There aren't many clubs bigger than ours. There aren't many clubs more successful than ours, either. There are some which are temporarily doing a bit better, but they're not bigger.
 

Zinedine Biscan

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I don't really know about this. I love Pepe. But if he wants to leave (which would be contrary to what he has only recently said), and if the club are happy to sell, if we get a good fee and if Begovic comes in to replace him...

If all that comes to pass I'll wish Pepe all the best and support the new guy. Begovic seems to be a good choice.
 

DEVGRU

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Hope in your heart said:
Well, if that happens and he plays back-up to Reina next season, I'll applaud this move. If Pepe leaves however, and Begovic becomes our new main goalkeeper, it will signal another downwards step.
You don't rate him?
 

Clive

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The other thing about Reina is the psychological effect of selling another of our super stars. His form has dipped, but he's a recognised star, as evidenced by Barca's interest. I believe the annual sale of a key player has an effect on the remaining senior players, and the fan base.

On Begovic, I hesitate to ask, but is he a LFC fan (Nikola may know given his knowledge )?
 

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i_still_miss_fowler said:
The Telegraph are running with Begovic stating "I want to start preparing on July 10, with all the players of Liverpool.”


So I think this transfer looks definitely on the cards. Cant say I am overly impressed and it signals Pepe's departure. Certainly not a bad keeper, but I dont think he is a great one either.
He's a good keeper for a midtable side, not seen a huge amount of him, but what I have seen makes me think he is not good enough for a side with asperations of making Europe
 



Nikola

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Clive said:
The other thing about Reina is the psychological effect of selling another of our super stars. His form has dipped, but he's a recognised star, as evidenced by Barca's influence. I believe the annual sale of a key player has an effect on the remaining senior players, and the fan base.

On Begovic, I hesitate to ask, but is he a LFC fan (Nikola may know given his knowledge )?
I think I read somewhere that supported Stuttgart. I don't know if it's true but I doubt that him supporting a certain club would have too much of an impact on his choice because he's a real professional. I contacted a lot of my friends and I'm yet to see a Liverpool fan in Montenegro who wouldn't want Begović if Reina leaves, it speaks volumes about how much we rate him.

Things is, who knows if he really is the no. 1 choice to replace Pepe. We'll see.
 

The Elusive 19th

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Nikola13 said:
You can choose which type of goalkeeper you like - I prefer the one that prevents the ball from crossing the goal line. In these terms, Begović is probably the best goalkeeper in Premier League. If we were buying in PL, I'd buy him even over Mignolet - I rate him that highly.
You end up convincing me every time with every player you write about.
Just hope he does do an Allen(inconsistency/loss of form) with us.
 

Nikola

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The Elusive 19th said:
You end up convincing me every time with every player you write about.
Just hope he does do an Allen(inconsistency/loss of form) with us.
To be honest, that is, along with proneness to injury, my biggest concern whenever we get a player who has never played for a big club. However, there is something about the likes of Begović and Mignolet that always impresssed me - I feel they have rather thick skin and selfconfidence. It's no wonder, looking at Begović's performances of past four years, he has every reason to be selfconfident and I hope he can carry it over to Liverpool and let it rub off on his teammates should he come here.
 

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AussieLad said:
He's a good keeper for a midtable side, not seen a huge amount of him, but what I have seen makes me think he is not good enough for a side with asperations of making Europe
Of course you haven't seen much of him. No one watches Stoke unless they have to. Van der sar came from Fulham. Hell Clemence came from Scunthorpe. Judge a player by his ability not by his current employer.

This guy looks like a great keeper. the fact that he is so tall means he was always going to take a bit longer to develop.

He is still young for a keeper and has excellent form in a pretty shit side. Stoke often defend deep so we know he is used to dealing well with congestion and he is an excellent stopper.
 

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Nikola13 said:
(...)

Things is, who knows if he really is the no. 1 choice to replace Pepe. We'll see.
Cheers for your previous infos on Begovic, mate. The best would obviously be to see him as nr. 2 behind Pepe for at least a season. Replacing a keeper is always a very complicated task, and I'd be really frightened to see a player as influential as Pepe leave in the same season than Carra. That would be a huge void left in our backline...
 



Nikola

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Hope in your heart said:
Cheers for your previous infos on Begovic, mate. The best would obviously be to see him as nr. 2 behind Pepe for at least a season. Replacing a keeper is always a very complicated task, and I'd be really frightened to see a player as influential as Pepe leave in the same season than Carra. That would be a huge void left in our backline...
If nothing else, Begović speaks English - language is always a problem when it comes to organising the back line (we do need a new centre back, almost all of our targets are from abroad and I don't know if they speak English). Thing is, if you take nothing but the overall form of last three seasons, it's Pepe who would be benched if Begović was here...

Don't get me wrong, mate, I bloody love Pepe but I want only the best for both my club and its players. Of course, defence worries me more than anything else at the moment, replacing its marshals will always have a bad effect.
 

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I'd only pursue him if Pepe wanted to leave. Otherwise I'm happy for Pepe to stay here for the rest of his career as long as he doesn't drop anymore. He's still an asset; he still pulls off some wonder saves and we don't want to be losing any more veterans.
 

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Not really convinced by the reliability of that source...

Begovic is a good goalkeeper, showed signs that he will become that since his Portsmouth days. In some aspects reminds of me of Cech (but of course not in the same class overall). Big, calm, brave, concentrated, though not really comfortable in kicking with his weaker foot and in distribution overall but you could also say that Stoke never really try to play from the back so it's his job there to use every goal kick almost like a direct free kick towards the opponent's boy.

There is probably more strengths-weaknesses stuff most of us don't know as I'm no goalie expert and it's always difficult for someone who's never been one or never really studied them to analyse that position/players with precision.

I want Pepe to stay and still am not sure who to believe is he staying or going, but if he is leaving then I hope we have a good look and take also different type of goalkeepers into consideration, I'm sure we will.
 

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Key considerations if the club are thinking of replacing Reina:

  1. Can we afford to lose the attributes Reina brings to the team (distribution, comfortable on the ball, good reflexes, great in the dressing room)?
  2. Are other attributes that Reina doesn't have more important to where we want to be; shot-stopping, command of his area, ability under the high ball, positional awareness, can he save a penalty*?
If the answer to both those questions is yes then selling Pepe for a good fee and bringing in someone like Begovic (presumably for an equivalent fee) is good business.

However, sometimes the problem of recruiting a goal-keeper from a mid-table side is that they have had plenty of opportunity to showcase their shot-stopping abilities. What they haven't been able to demonstrate and a part of the game that we hope they will have as part of their armoury is concentration.

To be a top keeper for a good side you need all the obvious attributes of any other keeper; reflexes, positional awareness, distribution, strong on collecting crosses - (basically all of the attributes listed in 1 and 2 above) but you ALSO must have the ability to maintain concentration for 90 minutes when it is hoped your goal-keeping abilities will be called upon far less than they were when you were at Stoke or Portsmouth, for example.

So if we were to go for Begovic the transfer does carry with it some risk in that regard but if it is a weakness in his game he may benefit from the input of Dr Peters?

*Carragher retiring may help here...
 

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Clive said:
The other thing about Reina is the psychological effect of selling another of our super stars. His form has dipped, but he's a recognised star, as evidenced by Barca's interest. I believe the annual sale of a key player has an effect on the remaining senior players, and the fan base.

On Begovic, I hesitate to ask, but is he a LFC fan (Nikola may know given his knowledge )?
I don't think Reina is the star he once was. Given the form of Diego Lopez and De Gea i'd suggest Reina is now probably fifth in line for a place in the Spain side and that Barca could do better in terms of finding a replacement for Valdes. They however love players that they have molded which is why Reina is perhaps the one they really want.

He's not the superstar he was three or four years ago when he was pushing Casillias for the number one shirt so I don't think that will be a negative in terms of him moving on. Losing his personality from the dressing room might but there's something about him that just hasn't appeared to have been right for the last couple of seasons, perhaps he's worn down by all the changes and disruption. I think the appeal of a move to Barca will be too strong for him to resist and we have to accept he'll move on sooner rather or later and now might be the right time for him to move onto a new challenge and for the club to cash in whilst his value is still relatively high and bring someone new in.

You never want to see good players and great characters leave the club but the time comes for everyone and if he wants to move back to his boyhood club to challenge for league titles and European honours you can understand.
 



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