The Unreliable Rumours Thread

Mascot88

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We were less of a club when we bought Robertson for less than 10 million and I'm not convinced he made the move believing he would be our 100% guaranteed week in week out starter.
Of course he did.

Whether it’s a conversation with Klopp, his agent, or just puzzling it out by himself, he can look at that Liverpool side and see that his competition for a starting place are a veteran midfielder who doesn’t want to play there, and an odd lad in the last year of his contract who the fans don’t like and doesn’t seem to know how to play football. There is no hot academy prospect that he is going to be competing with. Whether he thinks he is getting in straightaway or he’s going to have to bide his time a bit, he can see a route to the first team and the move makes sense.

Any left back we target now is going to see the World’s Best Left Back ahead of them, and unless they have delusional levels of self belief, have completely understandable questions about where they get their game.
 

Anfield rd Dreamer

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Of course he did.

Whether it’s a conversation with Klopp, his agent, or just puzzling it out by himself, he can look at that Liverpool side and see that his competition for a starting place are a veteran midfielder who doesn’t want to play there, and an odd lad in the last year of his contract who the fans don’t like and doesn’t seem to know how to play football. There is no hot academy prospect that he is going to be competing with. Whether he thinks he is getting in straightaway or he’s going to have to bide his time a bit, he can see a route to the first team and the move makes sense.

Any left back we target now is going to see the World’s Best Left Back ahead of them, and unless they have delusional levels of self belief, have completely understandable questions about where they get their game.
There is no way Klopp guarantees anything to anyone he signs. You earn a place in the side through a combination of working hard in training and playing well on the pitch.

I also think you are looking back on Robertson with hindsight too much and not giving a fair reflection on that summer when it came to left backs here.

Milner had just had a very good season at left back setting a Champions League assist record (I think was that year) and the only real issue was he tired out towards the end and performance dropped off due to overplaying.

Moreno had two years left and was looking a lot better than previously, he played as first choice LB first half of the season and it was his best period for us in his time here.

We obviously wanted a left back and a young one too (we had tried and failed to get Chilwell) and as with any player under Klopp there will always be a route to being a starter as it's a meritocracy here. I've no idea if Robertson expected to win a starting role or not but he knew he wasn't going to be handed one.

He was a cheap acquisition from a relegated side (was he even their player of the year?) in much the same kind of deal as Shaqiri (another not expected to be a starter and who hasn't earned a starting role) and largely a player swap with us for Kevin Stewart, another cover player who we were calling time on at that point.

I do agree however that a pure left back isn't going to fancy their chances of much football here if that's their only playing position.

Kind of limits us to 3 option;

1, inexperienced young players wanting to develop under Klopp.
2, older veterans wanting season or two at a top side with trophies.
3, limited journey men content their lot in life is to ride the bench.

None of which would be ideal especially the journey man option. That's why I've been saying my choice and prediction is a player who plays more than one position but is a good, strong option at LB. Like Milner is/has been.

I'm also not as convinced as some that there will definitely be movement on this in this summer as Klopp may give more time to see how Larouci develops and Milner is still there providing what we arguably need anyway. Just even Milner is finally starting to slow down a bit and Milner at LB in 2020 is not as good as Milner at LB in 2017 was.
 

Mascot88

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There is no way Klopp guarantees anything to anyone he signs. You earn a place in the side through a combination of working hard in training and playing well on the pitch.

I also think you are looking back on Robertson with hindsight too much and not giving a fair reflection on that summer when it came to left backs here.

Milner had just had a very good season at left back setting a Champions League assist record (I think was that year) and the only real issue was he tired out towards the end and performance dropped off due to overplaying.

Moreno had two years left and was looking a lot better than previously, he played as first choice LB first half of the season and it was his best period for us in his time here.

We obviously wanted a left back and a young one too (we had tried and failed to get Chilwell) and as with any player under Klopp there will always be a route to being a starter as it's a meritocracy here. I've no idea if Robertson expected to win a starting role or not but he knew he wasn't going to be handed one.

He was a cheap acquisition from a relegated side (was he even their player of the year?) in much the same kind of deal as Shaqiri (another not expected to be a starter and who hasn't earned a starting role) and largely a player swap with us for Kevin Stewart, another cover player who we were calling time on at that point.

I do agree however that a pure left back isn't going to fancy their chances of much football here if that's their only playing position.

Kind of limits us to 3 option;

1, inexperienced young players wanting to develop under Klopp.
2, older veterans wanting season or two at a top side with trophies.
3, limited journey men content their lot in life is to ride the bench.

None of which would be ideal especially the journey man option. That's why I've been saying my choice and prediction is a player who plays more than one position but is a good, strong option at LB. Like Milner is/has been.

I'm also not as convinced as some that there will definitely be movement on this in this summer as Klopp may give more time to see how Larouci develops and Milner is still there providing what we arguably need anyway. Just even Milner is finally starting to slow down a bit and Milner at LB in 2020 is not as good as Milner at LB in 2017 was.
When Robertson signed his competition was Milner (who’d had a fine season, but clearly didn’t want to play the position) and Moreno (who was shite).

Moreno did indeed have a good start to the season, but at the time Robbo signed, Alby was the lad that Klopp had bombed out for a midfielder who didn’t want to play there.

There is obviously a route into the first team at left back for a decent player in summer 2017. In summer 2020 that position is locked down by the best in the world, and it’s a tough sell to suggest any full back is going to get plenty of games.

By the way, Andy famously knocked on Klopp’s door a few months into his time here and asked Klopp what he needed to do to get into the first team (which impressed Klopp, as most players would ask ‘why aren’t I in the first team’). Robbo did what he was told to do and got his place.

What do you think a young full back knocking on Klopp’s door now is told? It is a meritocracy, but the answer is something along the lines of ‘be better than Andy Robertson’. There’s not many full backs across Europe who can respond to that.
 

Limiescouse

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Alby's good start to the season was the season Robbo joined. He then got injured which led to Robbo coming into the side and making the place his own. When Alby did get a run out he had reverted to his earlier error prone self.
And it wasn't really a good start to the season. It was a period of comparatively reduced calamity, but it was still not objectively good in either direction. It's relevant that the prevailing narrative for most of the first few months was why that Scottish lad we'd brought in who looked so good in that one early game he was given wasnt being played.
 

redfanman

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And it wasn't really a good start to the season. It was a period of comparatively reduced calamity, but it was still not objectively good in either direction. It's relevant that the prevailing narrative for most of the first few months was why that Scottish lad we'd brought in who looked so good in that one early game he was given wasnt being played.
I thought that narrative was driven by peoples long term distrust of Alby. I think other than the 3 goals we conceded to draw the Sevilla game, he had done well.
 

Limiescouse

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I thought that narrative was driven by peoples long term distrust of Alby. I think other than the 3 goals we conceded to draw the Sevilla game, he had done well.
He is not a good player. It is that simple. His performances reflected that despite them being comparatively better due to the relative lack of major fuck ups.
 

Anfield rd Dreamer

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When Robertson signed his competition was Milner (who’d had a fine season, but clearly didn’t want to play the position) and Moreno (who was shite).

Moreno did indeed have a good start to the season, but at the time Robbo signed, Alby was the lad that Klopp had bombed out for a midfielder who didn’t want to play there.

There is obviously a route into the first team at left back for a decent player in summer 2017. In summer 2020 that position is locked down by the best in the world, and it’s a tough sell to suggest any full back is going to get plenty of games.

By the way, Andy famously knocked on Klopp’s door a few months into his time here and asked Klopp what he needed to do to get into the first team (which impressed Klopp, as most players would ask ‘why aren’t I in the first team’). Robbo did what he was told to do and got his place.

What do you think a young full back knocking on Klopp’s door now is told? It is a meritocracy, but the answer is something along the lines of ‘be better than Andy Robertson’. There’s not many full backs across Europe who can respond to that.
What part of me saying what I said is arguing for a player who only plays left back? You're arguing against something I'm not saying.

I think what has this confused is that in summer 2017 would Robertson, at that stage of his career, have accepted a role of a journey man largely riding the bench, providing cover, for Robertson in 2020, best left back in the world?

I think he probably would have if it was his only decent option of getting out of relegated Hull but it would have been a coin toss between accepting that or instead moving to a Southampton or a Newcastle as a starter.

It's not cut and dry and some players do make moves that they know they will be back up only in (although it's less common in defence as there is less rotation). Adrian for instance, Shaqiri and Minamino too.

Robertson in 2017 was an unrefined gem waiting to be polished and exposed as fucking priceless. If he never had that conversation with Klopp he may have continued vying with Moreno that season and we may have eventually purchased a more established LB to be the starter with Robertson as back up for a season or two before moving on elsewhere like Shaqiri will probably do this summer.

Not all players expect to play week in week out. However they expect to get the chance if the player in front of them is rubbish. Andy was probably sitting thinking "well Milner isn't even getting played LB any more so I'm only competing with Moreno who isn't all that, theres got to be a way I can get myself first choice here I just need to find out how"!

And if Shaqiri or Minamino was competing with Downing instead of our current front 3 they'd probably be in same boat as Robertson was then. That doesn't mean they made the moves here expecting to get a chance to start but if the chance had presented itself (say we switch permanently to 4231 with Salah up top) you can be sure they would jump at the chance to seize a starting role just like Robertson did with Milner no longer playing LB after arguably being best LB in the league the year before.

I don't think players of the level of Robertson in 2016/17 would be out of our reach to bring in solely as back up IF we decided that was what we wanted to do. I don't think that is what we need or what we will do though.

I expect that, when we do decide we need a LB, we will target a high quality player who plays left back well as well as playing at least one other position (RB/CM/wing).

Klopp isn't the type of manager to want 20 full, senior, international level outfield players with 2 for each position. It leaves no room for youth development and creates unhappy players when one of the options is clearly better than the other, because there will be less rotation.

Klopp is more likely to have a core group of around 15 outfield players of the best possible quality who can cover all positions between them due to versatility. He will then have the best academy prospects getting chances and a few cover players just where we are a little weaker at with the first 15 and/or don't have the best options from the academy for.
 

Richard88

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Having Milner signed for another 2 years makes it much less urgent to find another LB, and should the right player not present himself this summer I think Klopp would be perfectly fine with going into next season with the same setup at LB.
 

Iluvatar

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Having Milner signed for another 2 years makes it much less urgent to find another LB, and should the right player not present himself this summer I think Klopp would be perfectly fine with going into next season with the same setup at LB.
I think as a team we've moved on significantly from the level Milner can offer as a back up. Emergency cover in a game yes of course, but long term rotation option? I don't think so.

Just like Gomez playing right back has a big impact on our attacking ability, Milner is similar on the left.

We are getting to the point that the right back up for fullback could be a winger!
 

Mascot88

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What part of me saying what I said is arguing for a player who only plays left back? You're arguing against something I'm not saying.
I don’t think I suggested you did? My disagreement is just around Robertson.

On the subject though, I do agree that full back cover comes from a utility player, but I don’t ever want to see us think we can play a Centre Back there. It’s an attacking position, and it needs an attack minded player.

I think what has this confused is that in summer 2017 would Robertson, at that stage of his career, have accepted a role of a journey man largely riding the bench, providing cover, for Robertson in 2020, best left back in the world?

I think he probably would have if it was his only decent option of getting out of relegated Hull but it would have been a coin toss between accepting that or instead moving to a Southampton or a Newcastle as a starter.
You never know what a players motivations are. I’d go to Liverpool FC to clean to toilets, but I’m a fan and not a player.

My point it’s that left back has gone from a position where any good player can see their route to the first team, to one where a specialist full back just won’t get a sniff.

In some cases a young player might decide its worth his while joining as cover and gambling on an injury*, or doing two years to try and raise their profile and work with a world class coach before moving on.

My only point is come in and displace Alby Moreno is a much more sellable scenario than come in and nudge out Andy Robinson.

*just as an aside, if I was a young left back being courted by LFC I’d be looking at Robbo and thinking, there’s a lad who’s run full stop for two and a half years, and is probably due a significant injury. Don’t want that to be the case, but just sayin’...

It's not cut and dry and some players do make moves that they know they will be back up only in (although it's less common in defence as there is less rotation). Adrian for instance, Shaqiri and Minamino too.
Yeah, but again the sell becomes a lot harder. Sometimes it also needs a bit of understanding in both side. A player might be interested in having Liverpool on their CV for a couple of years, but expect the club to be reasonable about facilitating another move when it crops up.

Robertson in 2017 was an unrefined gem waiting to be polished and exposed as fucking priceless. If he never had that conversation with Klopp he may have continued vying with Moreno that season and we may have eventually purchased a more established LB to be the starter with Robertson as back up for a season or two before moving on elsewhere like Shaqiri will probably do this summer.

Not all players expect to play week in week out. However they expect to get the chance if the player in front of them is rubbish. Andy was probably sitting thinking "well Milner isn't even getting played LB any more so I'm only competing with Moreno who isn't all that, theres got to be a way I can get myself first choice here I just need to find out how"!
Yeah, that’s what I’m saying. The role Andy now occupies in the squad was an open door to him. He just needed to walk through it.

My point is that backing up establish high performing players gets really, really hard. And there is a Groucho Marx type contradiction here. Is a lad who is content to be back up the kind of lad who we really want.

Look at Utd. It looks likes they’ve signed Bruno Fernandes. And the reason they’ve got him is because it’s obvious he’s a lot better than any of the shite they are currently playing (wait till Ole gets his hands on him though). This is a player that we were supposedly interested in, and it would be a lot harder to persuade him to come here, despite being a better club, more chance of trophies and working under a better manager.
 

Chewbazza

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I think as a team we've moved on significantly from the level Milner can offer as a back up. Emergency cover in a game yes of course, but long term rotation option? I don't think so.

Just like Gomez playing right back has a big impact on our attacking ability, Milner is similar on the left.

We are getting to the point that the right back up for fullback could be a winger!
This is why there was so much clamour for Sessegnon at the time. Could have provided cover for Robbo and Mané. Just unfortunate he wasn't ready to leave London.
 

Limiescouse

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I think as a team we've moved on significantly from the level Milner can offer as a back up. Emergency cover in a game yes of course, but long term rotation option? I don't think so.

Just like Gomez playing right back has a big impact on our attacking ability, Milner is similar on the left.

We are getting to the point that the right back up for fullback could be a winger!
I don't see the comparison between Milner and Gomez. Milner has won two titles while playing primarily as a fairly orthodox winger, and that is evident with the way he plays at FB. For all the fawning over the crativity of the current 2 FBs, it was Milner the year before who broke the single season CL record for assists while playing as a LB. The issue with him as our back up is less the drop off in the one off games he is played, but his ability to play a physically demanding role 2 games a week should we lose Robbo for any length of time.
 

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This is why there was so much clamour for Sessegnon at the time. Could have provided cover for Robbo and Mané. Just unfortunate he wasn't ready to leave London.
Yep he was on our list I think. Not done a lot though at Spurs.
 

Iluvatar

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I don't see the comparison between Milner and Gomez. Milner has won two titles while playing primarily as a fairly orthodox winger, and that is evident with the way he plays at FB. For all the fawning over the crativity of the current 2 FBs, it was Milner the year before who broke the single season CL record for assists while playing as a LB. The issue with him as our back up is less the drop off in the one off games he is played, but his ability to play a physically demanding role 2 games a week should we lose Robbo for any length of time.
Mainly the fact he has to cut in to his right to cross, which means Mane can get crowded out. It's a big reason Origi is an enigma on the left, he stays wide which forces Robertson inside v's Mane who cuts inside and Robertson does the overlap.

Maybe Milner + Origi is the key!
 

Limiescouse

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I think that criticism is primarily a stylistic one given how productive he has continued to be as a FB despite often choosing to cut back. Yes, there are differences in the way he plays the position - he is not as dynamic anymore, and not quite as good at defending the far post - but in essence he gives us a pretty good analogue. He is an all around good footballer who contributes very well in the final third but is effective at contributing in all phases of the attack rather than simply by overlapping and putting in crosses. I would argue that you wont find another LB in the league who can do that as well as Milner, principally because we're essentially judging FBs by the standards we used to judge LMs in our 80s 442 approach.
 
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redfanman

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I think that criticism is primarily a stylistic one given how productive he has continued to be as a FB despite often choosing to cut back. Yes, there are differences in the way he plays the position - he is now as dynamic anymore, he is not quite as good at defending the far post - but in essence he gives us a pretty good analogue. He is an all around good footballer who contributes very well in the final third but is effective at contributing in all phases of the attack rather than simply by overlaping and putting in crosses. I would argue that you wont find another LB in the league who can do that as well as Milner, principally because we're essentially judging FBs by the standards we used to judge LMs in our 80s 442 approach.
I think we could do worse than look for other midfielders to become the fill in full back if one is needed provided they offer a similar skill set to Milner.
 

Jimmyscase

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Virgil wants to sign for Juventus at season end for an undisclosed fee. Norwegian rumour on Transfermarkt. Soz about the Norwegian original and German translation. Sources are supposedly reputable and close to the club (it doesn't say which club!)
It's bullshit of course but it is a rumour so belongs in this thread I believe:

Quelle: Sportsbibelen.com
Skal vi tro oppsiktsvekkende rapporter, ønsker Virgil van Dijk (28) å forlate Liverpool ved sesongslutt.

– Utrolig, men jeg hørte akkurat at Van Dijk vil vekk til sommeren. Det er snakk om Juventus. Dette er fra to gode kilder meget nære klubben.

Zur letzten Quelle vom 29.01.2020 - 15:41 Uhr
Die norwegische Ausgabe von Sportsbibelen.com schreibt über Aufsicht erregende Berichte, dass Virgil van Dijk einen Wechselwunsch zu Juventus zum Saisonende ausgesprochen hat.

Die Info käme von zwei guten, sehr vereinsnahen Quellen.

Wer es glaubt ...

The German has got a mistake in it so you can make of it what you will....
 

Neukolln

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I'll wait with baited breath for Juventus' £8m offer with an additional £2m payable when hell freezes over.

Or for them to get him on a free in 2025.
Took the words right out of my mouth. If the dummies that made this up wanted to make this horseshit even remotely believable they could’ve, should’ve, picked literally ANY other club in the world than Juve.
 

Iluvatar

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I think that criticism is primarily a stylistic one given how productive he has continued to be as a FB despite often choosing to cut back. Yes, there are differences in the way he plays the position - he is not as dynamic anymore, and not quite as good at defending the far post - but in essence he gives us a pretty good analogue. He is an all around good footballer who contributes very well in the final third but is effective at contributing in all phases of the attack rather than simply by overlapping and putting in crosses. I would argue that you wont find another LB in the league who can do that as well as Milner, principally because we're essentially judging FBs by the standards we used to judge LMs in our 80s 442 approach.
He is 2 years on from that period though and whilst he has come into games and played 90mins and ran massive distances, when he has started consecutive games his form/performance does tail off. My concern is his age, as I said the odd game great but you lose Robbo for a month I think we’d see a big drop in quality after a few games. Surely we could find a better young option? I think Williams will be great on the right personally, Larouci for me looks years away from the 1st team though.

Sorry I’ve just seen your earlier post - I wasn’t saying Gomez/Milner are stylistically similar, more the fact they contribute to reduce our attacking output when fullback.
 

Limiescouse

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My concern is his age, as I said the odd game great but you lose Robbo for a month I think we’d see a big drop in quality after a few games. Surely we could find a better young option?
Yeah, we pretty much agree then. I dont think we have that much of an attacking drop off if we were to play him in LB in any given game, but across a run of games it would be a concerns.
 

nobluff

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Virgil wants to sign for Juventus at season end for an undisclosed fee. Norwegian rumour on Transfermarkt. Soz about the Norwegian original and German translation. Sources are supposedly reputable and close to the club (it doesn't say which club!)
It's bullshit of course but it is a rumour so belongs in this thread I believe:

Quelle: Sportsbibelen.com
Skal vi tro oppsiktsvekkende rapporter, ønsker Virgil van Dijk (28) å forlate Liverpool ved sesongslutt.

– Utrolig, men jeg hørte akkurat at Van Dijk vil vekk til sommeren. Det er snakk om Juventus. Dette er fra to gode kilder meget nære klubben.

Zur letzten Quelle vom 29.01.2020 - 15:41 Uhr
Die norwegische Ausgabe von Sportsbibelen.com schreibt über Aufsicht erregende Berichte, dass Virgil van Dijk einen Wechselwunsch zu Juventus zum Saisonende ausgesprochen hat.

Die Info käme von zwei guten, sehr vereinsnahen Quellen.


Wer es glaubt ...

The German has got a mistake in it so you can make of it what you will....
They literally couldn't afford the air he exhales.