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Deadline drama grips Europe, not just Premier League

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Phil Minshull | 22:26 UK time, Tuesday, 1 February 2011

There's no denying it. It was Fernando Torres' deadline day move to Chelsea that made the headlines across Europe, and especially in his native Spain, when the winter transfer window finally closed on Monday.

Both of the main Spanish sports daily newspapers Marca and As had coverage of the move on their front pages on Tuesday as he became the most expensive Spanish player ever, joining Carlo Ancelotti's team for a reported £50m.

Some of the comment about the move related to the irony that he achieved such a feat without either of the Spanish giants Barcelona and Real Madrid being involved.

However, even if the Premier League signings were the ones that caught the eye, there was still plenty of going on elsewhere in Europe on Monday, especially in Italy and Germany.

New Inter Milan coach Leonardo clearly believes that new blood is necessary if they are to sustain a run in this season's Champions League and qualify for next season's competition, even if defending their Serie A and European crowns now looks highly unlikely after Rafa Benitez managed to undo most of the work achieved by his predecessor Jose Mourinho in little more than four months.

Giampaolo Pazzini's arrival from Sampdoria on Friday already looks inspired after he got two goals in Inter's 3-2 win over Palermo on his debut on Sunday.

Fernando TorresTorres' next game for Spain will be as a Chelsea player. Photo: Getty

Inter also persuaded Cesena to part with the Japanese international Yuto Nagatomo, who many people think has been the best left back in Serie A this season, with their young defender Davide Santon going in the other direction.

The loan of Nagatomo could be a prelude for a summer bidding battle for him, which could include Inter themselves, Barcelona, Manchester United, Everton and Fulham, if Italian media reports are to be believed.

Italian international midfielder Amauri joined Parma on loan until the end of the season in a bid to put behind him his problems at Juventus, where he had been cast as the villain responsible for their dismal performance this season.

"My departure from Turin? Now we'll see if I am guilty," commented Amauri acidly in Tuttosport on Tuesday.

Serie A leaders Milan also strengthened their squad on Monday as they challenge for their first title since 2004, acquiring veteran former Italy defender Nicola Legrottaglie from Juventus on loan, with an option to sign him at the end of the season.

Former England boss Steve McClaren is clinging on to his job at German side Wolfsburg, and the 2009 Bundesliga champions bought five players on Monday to give him a helping hand.

Bayer Leverkusen's Patrick Helmes, Stoke City's Tuncay Sanli and Aderlecht's Jan Polak were all brought in as Wolfsburg's sporting director Dieter Hoeness, with money in his pocket from Edin Dzeko's move to Manchester City, attempts to change the stagnant atmosphere in the dressing room and move the club up the table from their current position of12th.

"We are now totally satisfied with the solution that we have found. We followed a strategic and also a short-term route because, as well as considering the development of the side, we also had to keep our current situation in our minds," said Hoeness on Tuesday.

Another interesting move in Germany on Monday was Schalke's signing of the veteran Iranian midfielder Ali Karimi, and they may have also got the bargain of the season when they bought Ghanaian midfielder Anthony Annan from Norwegian club Rosenborg for just 3m euros on Saturday.

Spain only saw six deals go through on Monday, the most notable being the loans of Giovani Dos Santos from Spurs to Racing Santander and Xisco from Newcastle to Deportivo.

Both players have made it known that they don't fancy a return to England in the summer, so expect for them to look for permanent moves to Spain.

In a quieter-than-usual January, perhaps an indication of the state of some clubs finances and the Spanish economy in general; the biggest names to move to Spain in have been players who are already familiar faces here.

Brazilian internationals, and former Real Madrid players, Cicinho and Julio Baptista found themselves back at La Liga clubs after being signed from Roma by Villarreal and Deportivo, respectively.

There were also two transfers to British clubs from Spain that didn't cause much of a commotion here but caught my eye: those of Ryan Burge and Ben Williamson, going from Jerez Industrial to Doncaster Rovers and Bournemouth, respectively.

You might remember that I wrote about Jerez Industrial back in mid-November and that there are close links to the Glenn Hoddle Academy, and mentioned the above two players as among their team's top players

Sadly, since then Jerez Industrial have gone through a rough patch and slid down to sixth place in their Tercera (Spanish fourth division) group, and they are now six points away from the top four who will contest the play-offs.

Obviously, their play-off chances have not improved by losing Burge and Williamson, who will be now playing at a higher level in England than they were in Spain, but in this instance I don't think Glen Hoddle will be too upset.

Beyond all the transfer hullabaloo in the past few days, there were two significant events on Saturday that seemed to have gone barely noticed outside of Spain, so I'm going to bring them to your attention.

The first was that Barcelona equalled Real Madrid's La Liga record of 15 wins on the trot with their 3-0 victory at Hercules which, coincidently, gained revenge for their only league defeat of the season

Real Madrid's record had stood untouched since the 1960-61 season, the era of Di Stefano, Puskas, Gento and many other legendary names.

They won the league by 12 points, six clear games, which has had various Spanish pundits semi-seriously suggesting that when Barca visit Real Madrid on April 17, six games before the end of the season, Pep Guardiola might put out what is effectively a reserve team to save Lionel Messi and the rest for the anticipated Spanish Cup final against Real three days later.

Now, Barcelona will aim to make the record their own at home to Atletico Madrid on Saturday.

The second, and much sadder, event on Saturday was the death of José Llopis Corona in Alicante at the age of 92.

Corona was the last surviving member of the Real Madrid team that played the first match at what was then the New Charmartin stadium and was soon to be renamed the Santiago Bernabeu.

Real Madrid beat the Portuguese side Os Belenenses 3-1 in a friendly on December 14 1947, a four-week break in the league programme allowing Real to move lock, stock and barrel in the middle of the season from their old Metropolitano home nearby.

He played five seasons for Real Madrid and one of his first matches was the famous 11-1 win over Barcelona in the semi-finals of the 1943 Spanish Cup. He was widely considered to be one of Spain's best defender of the 1940s.


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  • 1. At 00:03am on 02 Feb 2011, YousifPassesToTorresWhoScores wrote:

    I really don't blame Torres for leaving and i'm a Liverpool fan. He expected to win lot's of trophies with Liverpool and got promised lots of money will be spent to invest and of course that didn't happen. Also, he's entering his peak years and he's not gonna spend it helping Liverpool rebuild, he wants to win trophies and Chelsea can provide that, I believe were lucky to have kept him this long and he's almost single-handedly kept us higher in the league which gives us a chance to rebuild more quickly so I thank you Torres, you are a Legend and I wish you all the best and I really hope you win the Champions League and Premier League that you deserve.
    P.S. I think those 'fans' burning Torres's top are an absolute disgrace and shouldn't be given coverage by the media, these are only a minority who call themselves Liverpool fans.
    I repeat Torres, you are a Liverpool Legend and always will be, Thank You for your memories, you will never walk alone.

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  • 2. At 00:04am on 02 Feb 2011, Page_Moss_Kopite wrote:

    What an ingracious man Torres turned out to be,Even if he had a gripe with the club he did'nt need to kick us fans in the teeth with his remarks.

    Ah well its Chelsea supporters turn to idolise a player that plays for half a season and plays the rest for himself.

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  • 3. At 00:39am on 02 Feb 2011, jam_boy wrote:

    totally agree with #1, i'm a liverpool fan also and am definitely still a torres fan. all the best you will be missed!

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  • 4. At 01:02am on 02 Feb 2011, LFCinCA wrote:

    As an LFC fan, and normally a level headed one at that- I will find it hard to continue to support Torres as a player. I'm not upset that he's left the club, I'm not upset with the lack of effort he's shown this year, I'm not even that bothered by the way in which he went about conducting his move (end of the window and all); but I'm furious with the comments he's made today and the lack of respect he's showing the LFC fans.

    I don't want to hear any BS from the other team supporters out there- LFC fans ARE some of the best if not THE best in the world. We showed Torres nothing but love and cheered him all the way to legendary status.

    Does he make any concessions today about how wonderful the fans are and how he'll miss them and the club? Does he mention that without Liverpool he'd still be "the child" from Atletico that fans of Spain (the national team) didn't take seriously?

    No, he says that there's no higher level than Chelsea (please, spare me), that they are a team with an incredible legacy, and that he looks forward to scoring goals against the reds next weekend. I understand PR moves, but this is disrespectful and spiteful on his part.

    Add all that to the general feeling that most Liverpool fans now have- that he was a liar about his love of the city and the club's history- and it's really hard to find anything good to remember him by. A relationship built on lies is no relationship at all.

    On a side note- when exactly did he expect the new owners to invest before now? I mean, everyone keeps saying that Liverpool didn't fulfill their promise to invest, but this is the first transfer market since his decision to stay and the new owners coming in! It strikes me that the only reason he stayed was because his injury prevented him from fetching a decent price and he knew the club wouldn't let him go at a reduced price. It was also suggested that his form only improved in January because he was the puppy in the window; meaning that he's been sluggish for us the whole time because he just didn't care. That's speculative, but it certainly doesn't seem out of reason given the "true" character that he's recently shown. Good bye and good riddance.

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  • 5. At 01:23am on 02 Feb 2011, gezugowa wrote:

    True, Torres was a great servant for Liverpool all the while he played, and his scoring record for the Reds is brilliant. but the main issue I have is the lack of respect and dignity after his move down south.
    The man was adored by the fans from the first moment he showed the "YNWA" armband, and as recently as the start of January said that he loves the club, but now says about how there is nothing bigger than an aging Chelsea side. It's insulting.
    I much prefer the responses of players such as Xabi Alonso, who was near forced out by Benitez...and yet still comes to matches at Anfield and shows a love for the club, Rafa; who showed a graciousness to give money (although a small amount in terms of football money) to the Hillsborough fund, Riise; who penned an open letter to fans about how he enjoyed his time on Mersyside, and even, Ryan Babel who has used his (often criticized) Twitter account to thank the fans for their support and how he hopes the club does well...Babel had about a tenth of the support that Torres did in terms of hero worship and I truly hope that Ryan has a great time a Hoffenheim as it shows that he cares

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  • 6. At 01:37am on 02 Feb 2011, shamistication wrote:

    @LFCinCA I totally agree with you. Torres has made up his mind to go when things are not going Liverpool's way. When Liverpool reach the heights of 2nd position in the 2008-09 season, he was plagued by injuries throughout that season and scored "only" 17 goals in 38 matches (source: LiverpoolFC.TV). How do we account then for the success that Liverpool have that season as compared to the season after (2009-10) and this season? The main difference to that successful season is Xabi Alonso who unfortunately was under-rated by his own boss then, Rafael Benitez. Alonso left because of Benitez and partially the lure of Real Madrid. He is truly the legend of Liverpool FC and unfortunately there is very little chance of him returning due to FSG's policy of trying to recruit young footballers but I will not bet against it. Thank you Torres for your service but the club, rightly so, dispense with you. It pains that you showed disrespect to Liverpool but the club will move on achieve much more than when you were with us!

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  • 7. At 02:05am on 02 Feb 2011, ndc wrote:

    So where was the 'deadline drama' gripping Europe? The headline seems misleading.

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  • 8. At 02:32am on 02 Feb 2011, mpkisr wrote:


    I completely agree with you. 'Deadline drama in Europe'? Give me a break. Amauri is about the only player I have (barely) heard of, and even he is scraping the barrel somewhat. Baptista and Cicinho have hardly fulfilled their potential of a few years ago, and would consider themselves extremely lucky to be courted by even the bottom clubs of the PL. The most interesting part of this blog referred to Jerez Industrial, but again 'deadline drama'? I think not.

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  • 9. At 04:01am on 02 Feb 2011, Pabo Byungshin wrote:

    I think some people are misinterpreting the title of this article. Mr. Minshull states in the opening three paragraphs that Torres' transfer was the big news all across Europe; I think that the title is perhaps intended to mean that the specific piece of deadline day drama regarding Torres' will-he-or-won't-he move gripped the whole continent of Europe rather than just the UK.

    Or maybe it's just an overzealous sub-editor trying to grab more views for the blog with an exciting title :)

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  • 10. At 06:43am on 02 Feb 2011, LUFCsupporter wrote:

    The only reason Torres is the most expensive Spanish Player is that Liverpool want too much money to buy someone else.

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  • 11. At 07:25am on 02 Feb 2011, U14357625 wrote:

    Not surprising that the money spent by English clubs made headlines elsewhere - complete and utter madness in some cases. Luis Suarez could turn out to the best of the lot.

    It seems that clubs in other countries don't panic buy on deadline day the way they do in England, where it seems to be developing into some sort of tradition to go crazy on the last day.

    As for Real Madrid's 11-1 win over Barcelona, wasn't there suggestions that Barca players had been intimidated pre-match?

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  • 12. At 08:03am on 02 Feb 2011, stoddycol wrote:

    Absolutely agree with #4 and #5.
    Torres leaving was hard enough to take but the comments he's made since are an absolute disgrace. He's shown a total lack of respect to the Liverpool fans who have idolised him over the years.
    How can he say that Chelsea are a step up?
    I never thought I'd ever say this but goodbye Torres and good riddance!!

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  • 13. At 08:39am on 02 Feb 2011, ManUtdFan wrote:

    Great blog Phil! I would in part agree with post no.1 Torres at his best is a fearsome striker and joy to watch. I don't blame him for wanting to be in a team competing at the top of the premiership. Liverpool are work in progress and I don't think that they will be competing for the premiership in the next 2-3 years. That being said his comments yesterday did strike me as being disrespectful to Liverpool. I don't believe he offered any word of thanks to the club and the supporters who made him into the world class player he is.
    I do hope he will regain his form with Chelsea as an in-form Fernando Torres is a credit to the premiership.

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  • 14. At 08:44am on 02 Feb 2011, Dribble wrote:

    Just want to say I absolutely second LFCinCA (Post No 4's comments)...

    In one fell swoop Torreski has fallen from Football legend at Anfield to yout typical money grabbing back stabbing footballer, with no respect from where he came from.

    It will be interesting to see some of the tackles at Stamford Bridge this coming weekend...!!!

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  • 15. At 08:53am on 02 Feb 2011, ManUtdFan wrote:

    On Andy Carrols transfer - surely £35 million odd is excessive for a player who has only spent half a season in Englands premier division! I can only imagine what Lionel Messi must be worth considering his exploits and the accolades to his name. I would also agree with the post on Phil McNulty's blog that Arsene Wenger should be pleased that Cesc Fabregas's value must surely be beyond Barca's means in the aftermath of these latest transfers.

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  • 16. At 08:56am on 02 Feb 2011, doucoo wrote:

    As a neutral to all this, have to say I'm disappointed at Torres. Lack of respect for a previous club who adored him and he turns on them.

    I hope he stays injured, despite winning the EC & WC, I think it's players like Iniesta, Villa and Xavi that actually won it for Spain.

    My feelings are that it was a good bit of business from Liverpool, he's injured, I doubt the injuries will ever go away (Owen anybody?).

    He's good but not in the same class as the great strikers. Give me Van Basten any day.

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  • 17. At 09:05am on 02 Feb 2011, vicchris wrote:

    Another journalist having a pop at Rafa what a surprise.
    You ignore the fact that many of the inter team were injured, or the fact that he was given no money for players, and yet Leonardo has been.
    what is this obsession you all seem to have with Rafa and destroying his career. The british media along with Hicks and Gillete hounded him out of Liverpool, now just leave him alone.

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  • 18. At 09:05am on 02 Feb 2011, Kamana wrote:

    Torres has behaved atrociously. Wanting to leave is one thing,playing half-arsed for a club like Liverpool is simply disgraceful. We are well rid off him; Liverpool deserve players who will it give it their all, not sulk and mope around like he did. Great player, maybe the best striker in the world on his day, but also a petulant, unprofessional brat - a reputation he had even in his Atletico days.

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  • 19. At 09:10am on 02 Feb 2011, Redbud wrote:

    @ LFCinCA

    You lie. You said you were level headed!

    "I don't want to hear any BS from the other team supporters out there- LFC fans ARE some of the best if not THE best in the world." - I hope you know how ridiculous this makes you look.

    "Does he mention that without Liverpool he'd still be "the child" from Atletico that fans of Spain didn't take seriously?" - Once again a ludicrous statement.

    "club's history" - would L-fans stop going on and on about history! You are boring everyone to tears. Its not even interesting history.

    How old are you? A sulking teenager by the sounds of it.

    Torres has moved to a recently (not historically, yawn) more succesful and consitant club as he wants to win. Thats what great players do, win. Get over yourself and your history and accept it for what it is.

    An ambitious player.

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  • 20. At 09:11am on 02 Feb 2011, trotters4 wrote:

    Juli Baptista move TO Spain?....How can he if he plays for Deportivo L.C.?

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  • 21. At 09:16am on 02 Feb 2011, mrollydavis wrote:

    The best value (albeit outrageous) will most likely be for proven premiership goalscorers - therefore i suspect that darren bent and torres will both do well at their new clubs. i feel that liverpool have taken two huge and expensive gambles - an up-and-coming english striker who is unproven and the eredivisie topscorer with no top league experience. We shouldn't forget that since 2000 the leading scorers in Holland have been an illustrious list of: Kezman, van Hooijdonk, Kuyt, Huntelaar, Alves and Hamdaoui...none of whom have gone on to have a significant and consistent goalscoring impact in any of the top 4 leagues in Europe.

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  • 22. At 09:21am on 02 Feb 2011, delanotte wrote:

    Who cares what Torres says now? He's gone. He did a job, and now he's doing it for another company. Of course he wants to score for them against us because (1) that's his job and (b) he clearly rates them as a batter team than us, which, at the moment is hard to argue with. I just wish he'd gone to a club outside the premiership. So while I can't wish him luck, I bear him no ill will, I just hope he's completely wrong and that Chelsea continue to falter and Abramovich gets bored.

    Meantime, those of you who missed out on the transfer of Pazzini to Inter really aren't too clued in. One of the best players in Europe for the last 4 years. 70 odd golas in Serie A - there's life beyond the Premiership, y'know. Real shame for Sampdoria who looked to be heading back to top 4/5 status and have now lost both their strikers, Cassano and Pazzini in the window. That's quite dramatic in my book. If he gets Inter back into contention, it will be a masterstroke.

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  • 23. At 09:24am on 02 Feb 2011, Deepex wrote:

    I feel that Liverpool are better off without Torres. Whenever I've seen him play his body language was terrible and it was obvious he wanted to be playing elsewhere. Also I find it hard to believe that he was so easily forgiven for deciding to have an operation early last year so that he would be fit for Spain and the World Cup. This despite Liverpool chasing the Europa League and also fighting for the CL qualification. I really cant imagine any other player getting away with that and still getting the love that Liverpool fans gave him.

    Dalglish favours 2 attackers... a formation that Torres struggles with and I can see a young Carrol and Suarez forming a leathal partnership in a more Dalglish style team. At the end of the day the Liverpool I grew up watching never would have played the negative football that Liverpool have been accused of over the past few years.

    Torres is only out for himself and if things start going wrong at Chelsea he will soon be looking for a move elsewhere.

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  • 24. At 09:30am on 02 Feb 2011, Trevor Feet wrote:

    Hi Phil, Good blog as usual!
    How strong would you say Milan's grip on Serie A this season? Do you think Leonardo can turn it around and win the title with Inter? Surely with all of Milan's ageing legs you would expect to see a dip in their form towards the end of the season, or is the effects of age much less profound in the more tactical Serie A compared with the high energy Premier League?

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  • 25. At 09:31am on 02 Feb 2011, CoalitionOfTheWilting wrote:

    You simply have to take your hat off to a man who manages to have a dig at Rafa Benitez in a blog which has absolutely nothing to do with the subject.

    BBC reporting we've all come to know and love.


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  • 26. At 09:37am on 02 Feb 2011, wrawilla wrote:

    Mr Minshull, you got me all excited for a moment then with your reference to Baptista going to my team, Deportivo La Coruña. I thought that I had missed something as I was sure that earlier in the window he had signed for Málaga. So I thought I'd just double check in Marca and see that I wasn't dreaming. Lo' and behold he did indeed sign for Málaga midway through January.
    No comments on Afellay going to Barcelona? This was something done and dusted at the beginning of the window, but it was for a meagre 3 million euros and he could become a very good player as he's been touted as a good prospect for the future. Also, you haven't mentioned anything about Adebayor to Real Madrid, albeit on loan. That could also be interesting considering a recent poll amongst Los Merengues fans put him above Benzema in their eyes, could this mark the beginning of the end for Benzema at the Bernabeu.
    Just some more food for thought from La Liga, let's see what happens in the summer though when Real Madrid fail to win the league, what with already being 8 points back from Barcelona.
    Un abrazo

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  • 27. At 09:40am on 02 Feb 2011, nando_torres_terrys_bit_on_the_side wrote:

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the House Rules.

  • 28. At 09:43am on 02 Feb 2011, delanotte wrote:

    Mr Minshull appears to be referring to Malaga Club Football by their predecessors Club Deportivo Málaga as many still do... playing as they do at the rebuilt stadium etc etc and so on.

    Come on folks! Keep(y) up(py).

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  • 29. At 09:45am on 02 Feb 2011, Mighty Rubble wrote:

    Erm Phil, Julio Baptista went to Malaga not Depor...

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  • 30. At 09:46am on 02 Feb 2011, gripperrocks wrote:

    You seemed to have completely missed the fact that Hugo Almeida, a big lad who scores goals (therefore ideal for the premier league), has just moved from Werder Bremen to Besiktas for a "measly" 2 million euros. I feel Premier League teams have missed a trick there. He and Anthony Annan are most certainly the two bargain buys of this window.

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  • 31. At 09:46am on 02 Feb 2011, David G L wrote:

    MUFC fan in peace... The Torres situation reminds me of the same thing we went through with Ronaldo, Teves and to a lesser extent, Rooney. There is, life long fans excepted, no such thing as loyalty in football, . When these massive seven figures are being banded about and agents are involved, team loyalty goes straight through the window. Virtually all of these players, especially the overseas ones, are bought in to do a job, much in the same way you and I are, but are being offered at a later date, more money, or better prospects to do the same job for someone else. I doubt either of us would turn it down if we were asked to do the same?

    I remember when Teves left us for City, all I could think of was "How could you?" I stood on the terraces adoring him, singing his name and begging "Fergie, sign him up". Ronaldo was someone who left our club for his childhood heroes, so I could understand that... But I don't think he would have joined Real for a pay cut!

    So what lesson have we learned from all this? Don't expect the same loyalty to your club from players than what fans give... Fans love their club unconditionally, players love their club until a better deal comes along.


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  • 32. At 09:47am on 02 Feb 2011, Makelele6 wrote:

    Amauri is a striker not a midfielder!!

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  • 33. At 09:49am on 02 Feb 2011, delanotte wrote:

    Right, Deportivo is a name much like "United" over here. It means, simply, "Sport".

    When someone says "he's gone to United", does that means he's gone to Leeds? Manchester? Dundee?

    Same with Deportivo. And in this case, its a historical reference (see above). Jeepers.

    Aupa Athletic, by the way!

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  • 34. At 09:52am on 02 Feb 2011, David Jahngir wrote:

    Another article of your usual standard, Baptista has gone Malaga not Deportivo, whoever does your dirty work needs firing or you could actually read up and follow football?, how did you get your job? can I have your agents number? ridiculous.

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  • 35. At 09:54am on 02 Feb 2011, David Jahngir wrote:

    Was it cause Malaga and Deportivo play in Blue and White? why not just say that Baptista has gone Sheffield Wednesday?..Joker

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  • 36. At 09:58am on 02 Feb 2011, delanotte wrote:

    I'm no massive fan of BBC coverage in most regards but please read my other comments which may explain Mr Minshull's references to Deportivo.

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  • 37. At 10:04am on 02 Feb 2011, Oliver wrote:

    Very nice review of the European scene. Not quite sure that it was fair to say Rafa Benitez tried to undo the work of Jose Mourinho at Inter. In fact Benitez's successor is saying the same about the need for Inter to invest big time. It seems that Mourinho's magic wand is not working too well at Real Madrid in spite of inheriting the most expensive team ever assembled. His reputation as the 'special one' is certainly taking a battering in Spain.

    Regarding Fernando Torres, if you look at it from the financial point of view, his move to Chelsea makes sense, certainly for him. He has managed to negotiate a 50% salary increase, 120,000 to 180,000 p.w to be exact. With 5 years or so left of top football who can blame him? I think he's taken his chance well, especially considering his indifferent form during the last 18 months and a growing vulnerability to injury. I doubt any other club in the world would have taken such a big gamble but Chelsea is unique: a 70m pound outlay on 2 players the same week you announce 80m financial losses explains it all I think.

    If you try to understand Torres' move from a football success point of view I'm not sure the Spaniard has got it entirely right. Liverpool have had a terrible 18 months, but with new owners prepared and able to invest and a new manager, they are bound to improve. After all, two seasons ago they finished ahead of Chelsea.

    I think the main reason for Torres' move has been financial.

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  • 38. At 10:05am on 02 Feb 2011, tonyyeboahslibido wrote:

    How is Chelsea, at this moment in time, not a bigger club than Liverpool? They are listed as one of the favourites for the Champions League, and are still in tne hunt for the Premiership. He has a better chance of winning honours there. I agree that historically Liverpool are a far, far bigger club, but that's historically.

    How are we to know that it wasn't even a bit of a wrench for him leaving Liverpool? But he's moving for the chance to win things. He was and is, a loyal Athleti boy, and turned down numerous overtures from bigger clubs, because he was with the club he loves, but in the end, he realised that he needed to move on in order to win honours and become a better player. It's the same regarding his move to Chelsea. Seriously, get over it. Liverpool have brought in two very, very good strikers, currently in better form than Nando, and they are both young and hungry to succeed. It can only bode well for the club.

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  • 39. At 10:09am on 02 Feb 2011, DrLiverpool1978 wrote:

    We as Liverpool fans need to understand that it is any persons prerogative to want to further their career. Torres will achieve this by moving to Chelsea, short term. They are not a bigger club they are just in a better position.

    If I was in his position I would not have moved because I am a fan. I would have seen that one league title with Liverpool, which even next season is not outside our reach is worth more than anything I could win with Chelsea.

    Therein, lies the betrayal, we thought he was one of us. To this extent he led us up the garden path. This is why, while I very grudgingly wish him well, I will reserve a sly smile if the time comes and he falls flat on his back, along with a very old Chelsea side.

    "Adieu! The fancy do not cheat so well, as she is famed to do, decieving elf!"

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  • 40. At 10:17am on 02 Feb 2011, JamTay1 wrote:

    A message for the blogger. Reading Marca once a week does not qualify you as an expert on European football!

    Calling Amauri a midfielder is a truly amateurish mistake, and surely we deserve better than this? Incidentally, It doesn't matter if it was a mistake my an editor or sub editor etc the fact is that the blog has your name on it and it is very, very poor.

    With regards to Torres, I wish him all the best at his new club. It was a joy seeing him in a Liverpool shirt and I for one will not boo him on Sunday. A few ill advised comments on Chelsea TV, and a lot of mischief making by the gutter press, will not dilute my appreciation for what he has contributed to Liverpool. I'm hoping Suarez can fulfill his potential and as for the hugely over rated and over priced Carroll... Oh dear! At least I can be consoled there will be another English club daft enough to spend big on him in a few years time!

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  • 41. At 10:19am on 02 Feb 2011, David Jahngir wrote:

    #36 there is simply no reason to refer to Malaga as Deportivo when everyone refers to them as "Malaga" and everyone refers to La Coruna as "Deportivo" are you his agent?..

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  • 42. At 10:22am on 02 Feb 2011, Oliver wrote:


    I agree with you but if you forget about club loyalty and all that, Torres' move makes sense for him from a financial point of view. I think you have too see it like that. The agents are doing all the work for the top players, "Fernando, there's a huge offer in for you from Chelsea. No other club, including the one you're at now, will match it. Move!"

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  • 43. At 10:26am on 02 Feb 2011, OriginalJonBlaze wrote:

    More rafa bashing from the media ehy?? how u can continually slat this man whilst woy is regarded has hard done by is beyond me!

    As for torres yes you were my idol and to some extent i will still like you for your footballing talent, but i cannot believe the reason you were sulking all this time was cos you wanted away. Only cowards would get paid £1100000 with fans singing your name and you just dont bother putting any effort in. I do not know you personally but this shows what kind of a man you are. I


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  • 44. At 10:36am on 02 Feb 2011, David Jahngir wrote:

    Point further highlighted here as Xisco (who is actually waiting for the move to be rubber stamped) is linked with Deportivo La Coruna

    "Spain only saw six deals go through on Monday, the most notable being the loans of Giovani Dos Santos from Spurs to Racing Santander and Xisco from Newcastle to Deportivo."

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  • 45. At 10:51am on 02 Feb 2011, tonyyeboahslibido wrote:

    DrLiverpool1978 :

    Very well put sir. I would never leave Leeds for any club ha!

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  • 46. At 10:53am on 02 Feb 2011, Bergysdeftflicks wrote:

    Lots of Liverpool fans here i see hammering Torres for his lack of loyalty and respect. Come off it guys. Hes foreign, hes a footballer, hes in the game to get the best from it and he has no attachment to Liverpool. He narly fired you to a title a couple of years ago in a less than great team. Hes 27-8. Liverpool arent going to do anything for a few years and his game will falter in say 2-3 years as his type of player do. What then had he have stayed at Liverpool? 30/31 and nothing to show for his time here?

    Blame Rafa and your board and whoever else you want to navel contemplate and bellache about, but you all sound like that blithering fool Phil Thompson barking and griping.

    He and some of you need to accept at long last that Liverpool arent box office and have not been for years.

    Torres is the modern player and hanging around at the decrepit, one time old bear pit that used to be Anfield can not be an appealing prospect for such a player.

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  • 47. At 11:02am on 02 Feb 2011, CoalitionOfTheWilting wrote:


    What a depressing attitude to football you have.

    But that's the Sky generation for you.

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  • 48. At 11:03am on 02 Feb 2011, VAMOS wrote:

    Liverpool are now below City and Spurs, of course he needed to move rather than p!$$ away his career like Gerrard playing for a club that talks about history and not going forward. Torres has won nothing at club level, and he wouldn't at Liverpool. When will Liverpool finish top 4 for a start? Will prob take 2 years. As for having a go at Torres' loyalty? Fans are more fickle than players, you didn't have much sympathy for Newcastle or Blackpool either.

    With it all happening so soon, i guess didnt have time to sent Torres some of those lovely messages you sent to Gerrard when he wanted to go to Chelsea.

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  • 49. At 11:17am on 02 Feb 2011, Bergysdeftflicks wrote:

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  • 50. At 11:20am on 02 Feb 2011, dudepod45 wrote:

    When are football fans going to realize that football is no longer a sport: it's a business. Owners of Premiership clubs are in it for the bottom line or their egos. They couldn't give a toss about fans who, no matter how badly they are treated, roll up every Saturday like a lot of sheep. The same goes for the players. There is little loyalty these days. And of course a new signing is going to profess his love for his new club and fans until such time as he is on his way to a new club where he will trot out the same meaningless tripe. And all this nonsense about legends. A legend should be a player who has been with the same club for a good length of time, behaved impeccably and contributed immensely. Not some fly-by-night mercenary. Wake up and understand you fans are simply pawns in the game. So stop bleating.

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  • 51. At 11:21am on 02 Feb 2011, Bergysdeftflicks wrote:


    Ive actually been watching football for well over 35 years.

    Trt getting your head out from the clouds. Football is business, business and more business. The 'romance' died years ago and maybe began its lingering demise the day the max wage was abolished.

    So to show no bias, i would add that if on the same facts, the same cash and the same things being said was our very own Fabregas to Barca scenario, i like many others would wish him well.

    'sky generation'? Grow up and wise up will you!

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  • 52. At 11:22am on 02 Feb 2011, amilli wrote:

    i hope chelsea will now be able to perform very well in the premier. with he help of torres and drogba on the front roll

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  • 53. At 11:40am on 02 Feb 2011, Selecao wrote:

    Dutch football fan here; what is going on in the UK?

    Spending so much money on players, and yet hundreds of millions debt.
    (Wouldn't say the same for Chelsea, by the way.)

    How do clubs manage to keep on going?
    If it's only business, banks or shareholders would punish the clubs because of the bad way business is going...

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  • 54. At 11:42am on 02 Feb 2011, truebluewoody wrote:

    to all the Liverpool fans moaning about Torres saying he has gone to a bigger club, get over it!
    we had the same when Joe "i want more cash" Cole left to join you.
    Now look at him lol
    up the Chels :0)

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  • 55. At 11:44am on 02 Feb 2011, AllanB wrote:

    Forgetting all the money and the bitterness (mostly from Torres).. If you ask the majority of Liverpool fans; "Who would you rather have; Torres and Babel or Suarez and Carroll?"

    Hmm, lets see.. Babel; a striker so bad he was played out of position as a impact sub by three different managers and Torres who, if you look what he's done the last couple of seasons, £50m is actually well overpriced! Or Suarez who has attracted interest from a number of top clubs and has a brilliant scoring record at Ajax and of course Carroll who has took the Premier league by storm this season and can only get better!.. I know which two i'd want!!

    Even as a Man Utd fan I think Liverpool have done some brilliant business!..

    Chelsea on the other hand have spent £70m on a striker who needs a lot of work to get back to his best (if he can even get there.. remember Owen?) and from what i've seen of D.Luiz for Benfica, an overrated center-back. Though what it does add is a little more depth which they lacked at the start of the season so they could be back in the title race?

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  • 56. At 11:50am on 02 Feb 2011, ShabazaGooner wrote:

    Those of you defending Rafa at Inter: if i was Inter's chairman i wouldn't be too keen to trust him with my funds, look at the amount of bad signings he's made at Liverpool. Having said that, I think he was a good manager and deserved another year at liverpool.

    And as a neutral, I'm disappointed that Torres moved to a prem rival and then made such disrespectful comments to LFC and their fans. I read his autobiography and thought - finally a foreigner who understands english football and its fans, but it wasn't to be.
    Once the liverpool fans get over the emotional loss and hurt, they will realise that they made a really good deal considering the net expenditure. Those doubting Suarez, 49 goals in 48 games for one season is sensational anywhere in world football.

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  • 57. At 11:51am on 02 Feb 2011, David Jahngir wrote:

    #55 and they kept David N' all good..

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  • 58. At 12:07pm on 02 Feb 2011, JamTay1 wrote:

    51. At 11:21am on 02 Feb 2011, Bergysdeftflicks wrote:

    Ive actually been watching football for well over 35 years.

    Trt getting your head out from the clouds. Football is business, business and more business. The 'romance' died years ago and maybe began its lingering demise the day the max wage was abolished.

    So to show no bias, i would add that if on the same facts, the same cash and the same things being said was our very own Fabregas to Barca scenario, i like many others would wish him well.

    'sky generation'? Grow up and wise up will you!

    Come on we all love the Sky/Greed is good Premier League

    1. We can now spend 3-4 times as much to support 'our' clubs (tickets, shirts, sky subscription). Which only shows how great fans we are.

    2. We can give a huge amount of our money to Sky/Murdoch and then his rags will tell us how exciting 'the best league in the world is' While we all wonder whether Man Utd or Chelsea will win the league, again, this season. Still perhaps there will be some 'great' excitement like last year where a new club might even come forth! Perhaps a new club will net a billionaire owner and become competitive!

    3. We can watch mercenaries on a £100,000 a week (Of fans money) trot around sulking because maybe they could get £150,000 a week elsewhere?

    4. We have been introduced to such lovely 'football' people as Abramovich, Sheikh Mansour, Hicks and Gilette, the Glaziers, Peter blinking Kenyon! Peter Cook!

    5. We can watch as 'boring irrelevancies' like the FA Cup get devalued as their just isn't the 'money' in it. Far better to scrape for mid table mediocrity and earn a few million more (from the fans pockets)

    6. We can delight as Premier League games will be moved abroad, This will increase the profile and will surely offer us plenty more opportunities to pay more money to support our teams!

    7. We can enjoy the media speculation in the Murdoch rags as to which club might go bust next!

    8. We can enjoy the huge transfer fees for mediocre players (Carroll, Bent, Milner, Lescott etc)

    9. We can delight in the new wave of football 'experts' regurgitating Sky propaganda and garbage from the red tops. Who needs in depth tactical analysis when there is a transfer rumor or player scandal to talk about!

    10. We can then enjoy a World Cup once ever 4 years (assuming we qualify!) and there the truth of the disgusting, greed, arrogance, and capitalism of the Sky/Greed is good league is exposed.

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  • 59. At 12:14pm on 02 Feb 2011, shaz wrote:

    why could he not wait till the summer and then put in the transfer request? was he running out of money????

    why leave in january? another 6 months wouldn't have made him 30!!!

    atleast give us a chance to get back into CL spot? and if we did then see what players the new owners bring in?

    and if he is still not happy then PUT IN A TRANSFER REQUEST!!!

    what he did, though understandable to everyone including us LFC FANS, was absolutly DISGRACEFUL!

    He's proved he has NO HONOUR, NO RESPECT and NO LOYALTY whatsoever. I hope he plays against us this sunday. THERE CANNOT BE ANYTHING MORE MOTIVATING TO LFC PLAYERS THEN SEEING HIM IN A BLUE JERSEY!!!!!


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  • 60. At 12:17pm on 02 Feb 2011, delanotte wrote:

    @ 41: No. Not his agent. But I have had a passing acquaintance with Spanish and Italian football over the last 15/20 years which was enough for me to know the background. I reckon if you go to Alaves in Spain, Cali in Columbia or Toluca in Mexico, "Depor" will not be taken to mean "La Coruna".

    (Or indeed W@nka, in Peru.)

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  • 61. At 12:17pm on 02 Feb 2011, delanotte wrote:

    @ 58. Amen.

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  • 62. At 12:38pm on 02 Feb 2011, Random Word Generator wrote:

    I am rather fortunate to live overseas before playing our 5 a side game last night I told, quite indepedently of each other, an Italian and a French team mate about Torres comments about going to a big club.

    Neither of them undestood how going from, in their own words, a giant club like Liverpool, to a club who has never won anything of note (in european eyes, not british eyes) could be seen as anything other than a huge climb down.

    I know as a Liverpool fan I am biased but I have to agree with my team mates on this; there is more to being a big club than the ability to buy a championship.

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  • 63. At 12:40pm on 02 Feb 2011, DrLiverpool1978 wrote:

    #42 and #50
    I agree that at the end of the day its about money too.

    the thing is a football fan doesn't watch balance sheets, he talks about results. He doesn't go to the pub and brag that in 1986 Liverpool had the largest turnover or profit. Yes we should be aware of the financial implications of a clubs dealings and certainly of upcoming UEFA rulings but the supporter deals in a different currency - pride in your club and success

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  • 64. At 12:48pm on 02 Feb 2011, tommy_v wrote:

    Amauri is a striker, awful research awful article

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  • 65. At 12:50pm on 02 Feb 2011, Sir Harry Whitesnapp wrote:

    A passing reference to Torres in the introduction (Note: this not the subject of this blog) and yet most of the comments relate to Torres and the Premier League.

    RIP Corona

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  • 66. At 12:54pm on 02 Feb 2011, wrawilla wrote:

    Delanotte, whilst you made a valid point earlier in on saying that Deportivo is just another name like United is in England, I think that you should have done some research before attempting to defend Phil's use of Deportivo in his article when referring to Malaga. CD Malaga aren't exactly their predecessors, more accurate would be to say that Malaga CF were originally the 'reserve' team for CD Malaga. And while many people in Malaga may refer to them as Deportivo, the overriding truth is that the club in Spain most referred to as Depor is that of La Coruña. It would be like trying to claim when the Red Devils is used that people's minds wouldn't automatically jump to Man United even though there are other clubs who use the nickname.
    At the end of the day, Malaga are most commonly referred to as exactly that, Malaga. Whereas Depor are most commonly known as Depor/Deportivo.

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  • 67. At 12:55pm on 02 Feb 2011, Makelele6 wrote:

    56. At 11:50am on 02 Feb 2011, ShabazaGooner

    Those doubting Suarez, 49 goals in 48 games for one season is sensational anywhere in world football.


    A certain Alfonso Alves scored 34 goals in 31 games in the same league and then came to the premier league and was a flop!
    I could score 35 goals in 10 games for my sunday league team, am i sensational in world football?

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  • 68. At 1:00pm on 02 Feb 2011, David Jahngir wrote:

    #66 Amen

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  • 69. At 1:10pm on 02 Feb 2011, Macca wrote:

    Torres, in a Spanish side filled with talent at the WC, looked slow, tired and Spain improved when he was taken off and replaced.

    Liverpool have made the right move in selling him.

    I question though if they have made the right move in paying over the odds for Carroll. I also will reserve judgement on Suarez until a few games in. Both have bags of potential, Suarez was top scorer in Dutch league, but also has a darker side to him (banned for biting an opposing player during a game suggests temperamental issues, numbers of yellow cards backs that up rather a lot...)

    As for idea why they want Torres or why they have paid so much. Unless they feel that taking away Torres will effectively remove one of the key opposition for the rest of the season? I don't see how he will really add to Chelsea. £35 million would have been too much for Torres in current state. I accept I may be about to be proved very wrong, which is one reason why I'm not a football manager/chairman...but I just can't see it happening unless Torres has only been poor through being "stuck" at Liverpool...

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  • 70. At 1:16pm on 02 Feb 2011, douala wrote:

    Hi Phil you should also mention the transfers of David Luiz from Benfica to Chelsea and of Liedson from Sporting to Corinthians,Liedson is the best ever Goal scorer for Sporting in European competitions he was a huge loss for Sporting(Good news For Rangers) and the deal was only worth 2.1 million Euros.

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  • 71. At 1:19pm on 02 Feb 2011, abdul wajid wrote:

    I'm with comment number 1.

    Intially I was very disappointed by Torres and his behaviour. But have to say I sympathise with him.
    He is an ambitious lad who gave up a lot when he came from Spain taking a pay cut and leaving his boyhood club and captaincy behind.
    He had to endure the worst period of stability in the club's history with H&G, and also had to go through the breaking up of the spanish contingent at the club.
    He witnessed the leaving of our star players such as Alonso and Mascherano, the leaving of Benitez, and also had to endure a period of management under Roy Hodgson whos' football was the most depressing I have witnessed at the club.
    Promises had been broken, and he had not achieved anything he had come to the club for.
    With Chelsea being able to offer him what he initially came to Liverpool for, you can understand why he jumped ship.

    Now, watching his interviews and pictures with Chelsea, I really do sense that the lad is not happy. He looks stressed, and I really think this was a difficult decision for him to make but one which he had to because he could not go on any longer with more promises.

    He now finds himself in a very difficult situation where he cant really say much about his old club incase he upsets his new club and their supporters. So I dont think you will see his true emotions with Liverpool and its supporters until later in his career when he reflects back.
    Torres Has looked after number 1., but it wasn't always like that. He gave his all up until the last 6 months of his time with us.

    Why Chelsea?, well I couldn't see Arsenal paying the money for hi; Man u, that would have been even beyond Torres I think to do that to Liverpool; Man city had already brought Dzeko, So Chelsea it has to be which suits him actually if you ask me.

    Why not to a different country? Simple, England is the place to be at the moment and it suits his style of play. Also, Barca dont need him especially for that money when they can most likely churn out another Torres from their youth set up, and he cant go to Real, he is an Atlectico man. Italy? that would be a risk and maybe a step down.

    I must say though, he has not gone about his ways gracefully and has degraded the club a bit by his actions. This is the reason for the animosity towards him from our fans, but I think these feelings are only holding Liverpool back and we must forget Torres as soon as possible.

    I must say I'm more excited by the Carroll/Suarez partnership than Torres/Suarez as I could see it not working with Torres, however with Carroll I cant see how the partnership cant be worth 30+ goals because their individual qualities compliment each other, potentially.

    Torres knows he is taking a risk at Chelsea, but I can see why he thought it more of a risk at Liverpool. He may have been a bit naive as I think our new owners and managment are doing things properly, but than again it maybe us fans being naive because we have been in this situation of rebuilding before and it hasn't worked out.

    Good luck to Torres, hope he doesn't become a yoyo player between clubs if things dont work out for him at Chelsea, but no way on Earth are you an Anfield legend.

    As for us, what a turn around in the space of 6/7 months from doom and gloom to back to sunshine and happy days, all thanks to getting rid of some bad blood.

    Now we desparately need 4th spot this season or the next and then go out and get Sergio Aguero. Just trying to say that with being in the Champions league again Liverpool really do look an attractive destination to the highest calibre of players, and I love Sergio.

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  • 72. At 1:33pm on 02 Feb 2011, delanotte wrote:

    Nice work #66, you've found Wikipedia too, then? I was aware it was their reserve team, I just didn't think that was relevant. The point is that there is a link between the old and the new which may (or indeed, may not) explain Phil's useage.

    I did liken Depor to United and its fair to say that in the UK that the assumption would be that this refers to that team from Manchester. Unless you're in Leeds. Or Dundee.

    And people will be reading this from all over the world.

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  • 73. At 1:37pm on 02 Feb 2011, BigFatAl wrote:

    #16 Van Basten retired aged 28 because of an injury and before that spent a few seasons out through injuries. Torres has only had one bad injury.

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  • 74. At 1:38pm on 02 Feb 2011, Sadi wrote:

    If Liverpool buy Sergio Aguero i'll eat my hat! Would love to see Javier Pastore at Anfield though.

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  • 75. At 1:42pm on 02 Feb 2011, Dalastsamurai wrote:

    I am okay with torres transfer fee but 35 milion for carol! ridiculous

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  • 76. At 1:44pm on 02 Feb 2011, Dalastsamurai wrote:

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the House Rules.

  • 77. At 1:46pm on 02 Feb 2011, David Jahngir wrote:


    Point further highlighted here as Xisco (who is actually waiting for the move to be rubber stamped) is linked with Deportivo La Coruna

    "Spain only saw six deals go through on Monday, the most notable being the loans of Giovani Dos Santos from Spurs to Racing Santander and Xisco from Newcastle to Deportivo."

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  • 78. At 1:49pm on 02 Feb 2011, Dalastsamurai wrote:

    I am okay with torres transfer fee but 35 milion for carol!ridiculous

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  • 79. At 1:56pm on 02 Feb 2011, wrawilla wrote:

    delanotte, you know what they say about assuming...wikipedia is not the be all and end all. Try going onto Malaga's very own website, which is in English too if you can't read the Spanish, and it actually has the history on there. A much more reputable source than wikipedia.
    Also, check the league tables in Spain and see how often Deportivo are referred to as Deportivo, Alaves as Alaves and Malaga as Malaga...prove a point per chance?
    You comment that people all over the world will be reading this blog, true. However, in Spain there is only one team regularly referred to as Deportivo and as Phil says that Cicinho and Baptista are returning to La Liga clubs then logic dictates this as only beig one team...your arguments are floundering.

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  • 80. At 2:01pm on 02 Feb 2011, PaulusKeg wrote:

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the House Rules.

  • 81. At 2:04pm on 02 Feb 2011, Nicole wrote:

    It's clear that Torres left Liverpool for sporting reasons.

    At 26 and having won nothing at Club Level must be a really big issue with him, especially when he goes with the national team and most of his teammates have won CL trophies (Barca) and titles (Barca and Madrid) and even some of his own teammates at Liverpool like Gerrard.

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  • 82. At 2:05pm on 02 Feb 2011, bikku wrote:

    i can understand some liverpool fans getting angry with torres but i don't think i can blame him for what he did until i know his side of story, although he kind of showed disrespect towards the fans, he has done so much for liverpool in terms of football that i can't despise him, there are many great things he did at liverpool, in his time here he broke many individual club records and scored many important goals time and time again, when he was here we won against man united, arsenal, and even chelsea and we were able to held our heads high and brag about it, all the big teams used to fear us because of him, he crossed the 20 goals landmark more than once, even in this season though out of form most of our wins came from him, so i for one thank him for what he has done for us and wish him to be the best striker in epl, though we signed two new strikers i still think we're gonna miss him a lot...

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  • 83. At 2:05pm on 02 Feb 2011, Dusk1983 wrote:

    #80 - bilge, and I'm certainly no fan of Chelsea.

    Abramovich took advantage of lax Russian legislation to make his fortune - no more no less.

    Unless you have concrete proof to the contrary, the BBC should remove your comment forthwith.

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  • 84. At 2:08pm on 02 Feb 2011, Dalastsamurai wrote:


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  • 85. At 2:09pm on 02 Feb 2011, SCL wrote:

    Personally I'm surprised by the lack of transfer activity in Spain, and in Italy with the exception of Milan consolodating their squad significantly, it was a quiet market in Serie A as well.

    There's no doubting that the Torres transfer was the talk of Europe, and fair enough - in the eyes of the neutral fan, this is Torres joining a club where he now has a very real chance of winning something.

    Liverpool have always struck me as the Roma of English football these days - always 2 or 3 world class players away from being a true challenger to the title. Its a shame they've taken a step back in selling Torres but you can understand both why the player and the club have agreed to the move.

    That said, his comments afterwards were regrettable - I did laugh when I heard him speak of Chelsea as a club with a great history.

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  • 86. At 2:16pm on 02 Feb 2011, Kyerewah wrote:

    Ooh Torres, am so happy for him though he made this weighty decision. Honestly, he could no longer lean on empty promises. He did the right thing and i support him for that. With his fans who are buring his jersey, am sorry to say now he is for the BLUES. Torees here, Chelsea here. I hope he lives up to expectation.

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  • 87. At 2:37pm on 02 Feb 2011, 888silverfox wrote:

    Re DrLiverpool1978's comment referring to Chelsea as "a very old side". This accusation is banded around by all and sundry - very unfairly. On closer inspection the numbers don't quite stack up. Here's a comparison of Chelsea's recent line up v Sunderand with Liverpool's recent line up v Fulham and Man Utd's line up v Aston Villa.
    Chelsea: Cech 28, Bosingwa 28, Ivanovic 26, JT 30, A. Cole 30, Essien 28, Mikel 23, Lampard 32, Kalou 25, Drogba 32, Anelka 31. Average age 28.4
    Liverpool: Reina 28, Johnson 26, Agger 26, Skrtl 26, Kelly 20, Rodriguez 30, Gerrard 30, Poulsen 30, Kuyt 30, Meireles 27, Torres 26. Average age 27.1 There is very little difference, less than a year per man on average. And this excludes the regular centre back pairing of Carragher 33 and Kyrgiakos 31 who didn't play, which would have taken Liverpool's average age up.
    Man Utd: Van der Sar 40, O'Shea 29, Vidic 29, Ferdinand 32, Evra 29, Nani 24, Carrick 29, Fletcher 27, Giggs 37, Berbatov 30, Rooney 25. Average age 30.1 The team average is a fair bit older than Chelsea's. Even if you took out Van der Sar and replaced him with a 28 year old keeper, the average age is 30...older than Chelsea by a year and a half per man.

    If you consider that Chelsea had Ramires (23), Bruma (19) and McEachran (17) on the bench last night and with the incoming David Luiz (23) and Torres (26) it shows that Chelsea has got a very good balance of youth and experience. You need to look a bit deeper before making accusations of Chelsea being "a very old side"

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  • 88. At 2:51pm on 02 Feb 2011, zomgbat wrote:

    Liverpool have definitely came out of the transfer window on a high note; almost breaking even and Suarez + Carrol > Torres.

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  • 89. At 2:58pm on 02 Feb 2011, spacewand wrote:

    We've been Nando'd, that is, told one thing and had the opposite done to us.Torres swore unflinching loyalty to the red shirt, the red club, the city, but turned his back on us at the last minute, sans regret,sans apology, sans a real thankyou. He had his head turned by the lure of the capital and with the worst timing in the world twisted a knife into the body of LFC. Too strong a metaphor? No, he could have spoken honestly about his unease a month ago instead of all that indifferent body language on the pitch and platitudes to the camera.He showed disrespect to KK by not telling him the truth but KK still perservered.Work with me and we can turn things around. We have a young dynamic Uruguyan lined up to partner you.We are a more attacking team,and there'll be good money for fresh players in the summer. The fans adore you, you are a near legend.Like a politician Torres heard all this, nodded his head, altered his body language,even smiled again after scoring a couple against Wolves....then? Told his agent to tap up Chelsea? Shook his head when we offered Blackpool 4.5m for a midfielder? Wrote his request hours after we'd almost signed Suarez, because we'd almost signed Suarez? It beggars belief that he timed it so badly.He must have known the turmoil it would cause. And in all truth his move to Chelsea is a conscious decision to rile LFC fans who have always viewed the west London club as the antithesis of all what LFC stand for.I am a Kopite, 55, I've seen great days,great teams,great characters, great players. Rushie left for Italy,Owen for Spain,Keegan for Germany...Torres for what? Perhaps after this fiasco we should never use the words loyalty and the modern celebrity footballer in the same sentence again.

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  • 90. At 3:12pm on 02 Feb 2011, Ayoade Oluwasanmi wrote:

    Torres has a right to move anywhere he likes, but his remarks about a move to Chelsea being a step up is absolute nonesense. Chelsea used to be my second team in the Tore Andre Flo, Roberto De Matteo, Vialli, Babayaro et al, all before Abramovich. Calling Chelsea a big club is laughable. 2 Premier League titles in 50 years does not, I repeat, does not make you a big club. It's just a case of you English people overhyping things. At best, Chelsea is a medium sized team hoping to make it big. Which is why Abravomich is so eager to win the Champions League. Torres should shut up and let his feet speak for him.

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  • 91. At 3:14pm on 02 Feb 2011, delanotte wrote:

    I wasn't even aware I was having an argument. I'm well aware of the standard naming convention in La Liga for Deportiva La Coruna.
    I was making a possible case for Phil's useage of that term in the context of this blog because he was getting a hard time.

    Anyway, I agree, your points are all logical and well made and I'm clearly not only floundering but devastated.

    Good point made elsewhere:
    Liverpool's nett outlay = £2M [58 spent - 56 received)
    Liverpools wage bill for Torres & Babel = 9.3M per annum
    Liverpools wage bill for Carroll & Suarez = 7.0M per annum (not to mention those wages covered by other teams as a few more fringe players go out on loan)

    So, for an outlay of 2 million they have replaced their attack and that will pay for itself in less than a year. Not bad from a business perspective, I just hope it works on the pitch too!

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  • 92. At 3:15pm on 02 Feb 2011, RedddRussian wrote:

    As an years long LFC supporter and a great admirer of Torres, I don't have to say how heartbroken and devastated I feel facing what happened in the past few days. I never expected myself to cry over the footballer leaving to another club, as if a boyfriend left me for another woman... but having read a lot of fellow supporters' comments, I find myself not the only one who had such an irrational feeling about this.

    Those of you who offer us to look at it from the business point of view, saying that a football player is just a job, that we all change our job once in a while, etc., are probably right, but do not probably understand the depth of the blow, and I do not expect you to. As I mentioned above, our emotions have been prevailing over the rational thinking in the past few days.

    The interview where Torres has basically shown that he tossed us away and is now moving on with a 'better' club did hurt even more, to top things up.

    However, today, when the ability to think straight over the whole situation started to come back, I came to a conclusion that emotionally it is even better for us supporters, not having a word of gratitude from him and seeing him as a cold and calculating person who probably was in love with us some time ago, but them noticed a 'younger model with silicon boobs' and said - ok, darling, you made me a real man, now I am off to prove that to myself and to the others who are younger and bustier.

    Please, do answer a question to yourself: would you really feel better if he hailed LFC, said how full of love he was toward the club and the fans? How he would always be RED in his heart??
    NO! NO, NO, NO. It would have felt even more bitter for us, and we would have been discussing further - oh why didn't you stay then, we could have done this and that together...

    TIME TO TURN THE PAGE, my dear fellow reds. Torres turned the page. He chose to become another expensive trophy for the rich owner. He left to the rival club, and maybe he will achieve more there... time will show. If he does, I will feel quite gutted but also PROUD of him. If it doesn't work out for him and he repeats Shevchenko's destiny, then he will prove that he made a wrong choice. I certainly hope it doesn't happen to him though.

    With the two young, ambitious and full of life and fighting spirit strikers like Suarez and Carroll we definitely gained a lot. They are not going to be idolized like Torres was, and maybe it is better if they are not. But we will undoubtedly see great results from them.

    P.S. In my humble opinion, we did a wrong thing buying Carroll from Newcastle in this window. Firstly, because we put them in a very bad situation, and their fans must be feeling even worse, having no replacement; secondly, Andy is injured and will be able to play only by the end of the season. So we could have waited till the summer with the more or less same effect. I think this was more of a PR action to prove that the owners are ready to spend, to strengthen, etc...

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  • 93. At 3:22pm on 02 Feb 2011, delanotte wrote:

    @87 - your case is well made BUT for the record, I don't consider carra and kyrgiakos first picks anymore. Skrtel and Agger are my preferred pairing.

    And to all you carragher lovers out there, yes, he's a club legend but he's not quick enough, let your heads rule your hearts on this one and it has to be Agger and Skrtel.

    To be fair to United, Scholes and Giggs rarely start together and vdSaar hits the average badly. I'd say all the teams aren't far apart age wise, albeit Liverpool's will come down a bit when Suarez and Carroll are both starters.

    I'd say most teams aim for a mix which bring them in around 27/28.

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  • 94. At 3:27pm on 02 Feb 2011, delanotte wrote:

    but will he he/she/they fall for it, readers??

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  • 95. At 3:27pm on 02 Feb 2011, Rob wrote:

    Okay, “calm down, calm down” everyone. Admittedly I’m a Bristol City supporter but did follow Liverpool as a child…in the original Dalglish era. Good times. Therefore, I’m qualified to have an opinion.

    Firstly, Fernando Torres is a world class striker. He is a World Cup and European Championship Winner. He is 26 and despite his international medals he doesn’t have any club honours to his name. He has devoted his career thus far to being loyal to his true and, perhaps second, loves – Athletico and Liverpool. And with all due respect, Liverpool is nowhere near winning any trophies. At this point in Torres’ career he has to move on to find success.

    Secondly, as hard as this may be to accept, he is an Athletico Madrid die-hard. Liverpool is not his first love. And he never suggested it was. He already left his boyhood club for Liverpool (didn’t hear you complain about loyalty then!), so why the surprise at this much-less significant move? His loyalty remains with Athletico and always will. Be thankful for the years you’ve had with him and the 150% profit you made on him.

    Okay, he maybe said a few things in the heat of the moment – likely driven by adrenaline, the sour taste in his mouth from his last few days at Anfield and the expectation of Chelsea TV to say the right things. He’s also Spanish remember. English is not his first language so we don’t know how much was lost in translation.

    Just hope he doesn’t bang in a hat-trick against you on Sunday. If he scores, you’ll know by his reaction how he feels about LFC and the (best) fans (in the world?).

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  • 96. At 3:31pm on 02 Feb 2011, forza-juventus wrote:

    Would just like to point out that Amauri is a striker, although his goal record for the past 2 seasons is worse than that of Giorgio Chiellini who is a CB. If you're going to report something at least make sure it's accurate...

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  • 97. At 3:55pm on 02 Feb 2011, dave parker wrote:

    Please, please will all the Liverpool fans stop whinging. Granted Torres could have talked a bit more about how great the fans have been but nowadays there is no room for sentiment in football. Just look at how many fans reacted to the Torres transfer by burning shirts and slagging him off. Why would he say how great you all are????

    Its about winning trophies and currently Liverpool aren't in a position to do that.

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  • 98. At 3:59pm on 02 Feb 2011, TheArmBand wrote:

    Torres has sold his soul. A Champions League, Premier League Medal will never bring it back.

    He may end up with some medals in his cabinet to show his grandchildren, but he will never be regarded as a legend from now on.

    What legacy has Shevchenko left behind?

    Any of you that are familiar with Shakespeare's Macbeth, will know the morals of the story. The lure of power and wealth can blind a man to common sense.

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  • 99. At 4:18pm on 02 Feb 2011, matty408 wrote:

    poor deluded liverpool fans - the "best" fans in the world. yeah right. what makes you any better than fans of other clubs i will never know.

    good luck to torres moving on. he joined liverpool to win trophies under the misapprehension that benitez was a decent manager, how wrong he was proved. liverpool as a team have gone backwards severely, to the point that they are now merely challenging for a uefa cup spot. that is not good enough for a player of his calibre. he has the talent to be challenging for major honours each and every season, and as he rightly says, he will get that at chelsea, not at liverpool. How can you expect him to remain motivated and committed to the liverpool cause when the team is steadily weakened, playing alongside players such as lucas, johnson, konchesky, ngog. the list goes on. i would say it is liverpool who have betrayed him, not the other way round. and despite the probable feel good factor around anfield, i feel it will take more than 2 unproven strikers (1 of them hugely overpriced) to turn liverpool into genuine contenders again. hopefully, they may manage to sneak into the uefa cup. well done! Chelsea have signed a proven top, top quality striker and £50m may turn out to be a steal.

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  • 100. At 4:23pm on 02 Feb 2011, billy wrote:

    98 completely agree . I'm a man utd fan and the way torres treated liverpool should make me laugh but it didn't , it saddened me . What he did was very low and selfish . Guess he showed his true character , disgusting to spout all that nonsense about loving the club. Even in the mad world of modern football the way he departed surprised me.

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  • 101. At 4:36pm on 02 Feb 2011, Jack Bauer wrote:

    All this Torres bashing has gone a bit over the top now. Any Liverpool fan that thinks they are currently a bigger club than Chelsea is deluded.
    Of course, the history of the club and fanbase they boast rivals any club in the world, but in terms of domestic success in the past ten years, Chelsea are now streets ahead.
    The golden era of the 1980s will be irrelevant to the next generation of players and Torres is bang on when he says he's moving up a level.
    How typical of the fickle Liverpool fans to hit out at somebody who has the best goals per minute ratio in Premier League history.
    Torres should go down as a club legend and somebody who the club sold for double what they paid for him, having enjoyed a number of fantastic seasons at Anfield.
    I for one hope Torres fires Chelsea to a win over Liverpool this weekend - and hopefully he'll help the blues end the unbeaten streak of the most overrated Man United team in history later this season.

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  • 102. At 4:39pm on 02 Feb 2011, dave parker wrote:

    100. At 4:23pm on 02 Feb 2011, billy wrote:
    98 completely agree . I'm a man utd fan and the way torres treated liverpool should make me laugh but it didn't , it saddened me

    Have you listened to yourself billy??!! It saddens me that you are a Man Utd fan feeling sorry for all these Liverpool fans who can't stop griping!!

    The way Torres treated Liverpool was no different to the way most transfers are. You need to understand that players have the ability to engineer moves to whatever club they want. Charlie Adam tried to do it by handing in his transfer request at Blackpool and Darren Bent did at Sunderland. Its a fact of football life nowadays.

    Anyway can you really blame Torres?? He has clearly been disillusioned for a while and when he had the chance to move to a better club, he pushed it through. I am sure if a company in your line of work approached you offering you better career prospects and more money you would snap there hand off!!?? And thats exactly what Chelsea offer, better career prospects, more chances of winning trophies. Liverpool are clearly a good few years behind.

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  • 103. At 4:39pm on 02 Feb 2011, Phil Minshull wrote:

    Footballfutbalfitba: “As for Real Madrid's 11-1 win over Barcelona, wasn't there suggestions that Barca players had been intimidated pre-match?” Over the years, there have been various suggestions and theories about what may have happened or not happened that lead to such a one-sided defeat. It all depends on whether you are a Real Madrid supporter or not. One thing is certain, there had been an astonishing (even by Spanish standards) amount of personal abuse of the Real Madrid players in the Catalan media after Barcelona’s 3-0 win in the first leg and Real, as well as their supporters in the old Metropolitano stadium, decided to respond.

    ManUtdFan: “Liverpool are work in progress and I don't think that they will be competing for the premiership in the next 2-3 years. That being said his comments yesterday did strike me as being disrespectful to Liverpool.” This is primarily a blog about European football, but I can see Liverpool challenging for a top four place next season. They’ve got the fire power now but a couple of defensive signings in the summer might have been helpful. As for Torres, personally I think he was very misguided to make the comments he did about Liverpool on Tuesday, it’s not as though he had too tough a time there and he must have known he was revered by its supporters.

    vicchris: “Another journalist having a pop at Rafa what a surprise.” All I can do is refer you to the blog I wrote in August before Serie A got underway.

    My aim hasn’t always been true, and I’m sure people will remind me of the blog I wrote in September that expressed my doubts over the wisdom of Zlatan Ibrahimovic’s move to Milan, but this always looked, at least to me, like the wrong coach going to the wrong place at the wrong time.

    Trevor Feet: “How strong would you say Milan's grip on Serie A this season? Do you think Leonardo can turn it around and win the title with Inter? Surely with all of Milan's ageing legs you would expect to see a dip in their form towards the end of the season, or is the effects of age much less profound in the more tactical Serie A compared with the high energy Premier League?” Lots of good questions. Four-point margins have been overturned plenty of times in the past but I have the feeling that Milan is good enough to hang on. It’s difficult to see Napoli overhauling them despite the excellent form of Cavani, who moved to the top of the Serie A goalscorers with his hat trick in their 4-0 win over Sampdoria at the weekend and a nine-point deficit is almost certainly too much for a revived Inter to make up with just 16 games remaining. BTW There are two good articles on Milan in the February issue of World Soccer, which is still on sale until February 10, according to the inside back cover. I’m not sure age is going to be too much of an issue as nearly all their key players are still under 30, with the obvious exceptions of Nesta and Gattuso (and goalkeeper Abbiati).

    Wrawilla: “Mr Minshull, you got me all excited for a moment then with your reference to Baptista going to my team, Deportivo La Coruña. I thought that I had missed something as I was sure that earlier in the window he had signed for Málaga.” You are right (and so were all the others who pointed out this mistake, the ones that did it nicely include MightyRubble) and I was wrong! Malaga signed so many players, well five, that he was easy to overlook. I could also have been thinking about Xisco, who I mentioned a few paragraphs before. No, at the end of the day, I’m just making lame excuses for a sloppy error. Mea Culpa. As Steve Coogan (playing Anthony H Wilson) in 24 Hour Party People says, “If you get it, great. If you don’t, that’s fine too. But you should probably read more.”

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  • 104. At 4:46pm on 02 Feb 2011, TheArmBand wrote:

    @matty408 - Chelsea's last 18 games: P18 W7 L6 D5

    A true sign of a team on the up and about to win the PL & CL this season.

    Take your rose tinted glasses off and smell the coffee.

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  • 105. At 4:47pm on 02 Feb 2011, VAMOS wrote:

    100. At 4:23pm on 02 Feb 2011, billy wrote:
    98 completely agree . I'm a man utd fan and the way torres treated liverpool should make me laugh but it didn't , it saddened me . What he did was very low and selfish . Guess he showed his true character , disgusting to spout all that nonsense about loving the club. Even in the mad world of modern football the way he departed surprised me.


    If you are not enjoying your football, its very hard to play at 100%. People moaned at Torres for putting in bad performances, well its hard to fool the heart and give it your all. At the same time people are critisising him for the transfer and giving Liverpool a very good £50m way out. Before the bla bla bla he gets paid £100k so should try harder comments, its a good deal for both parties and Torres is too good for Liverpool atm.

    And please stop with the Liverpool are a bigger club than Chelsea. They are NOT!!! Why would a player move to a mid table team that was good 20 years ago?

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  • 106. At 4:57pm on 02 Feb 2011, dave parker wrote:

    Too many Liverpool fans

    whinning about torres

    and thinking they are a great

    team are clearly


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  • 107. At 4:58pm on 02 Feb 2011, dave parker wrote:

    look at the first letter of each line on my last post #106. You will see what I think of these Liverpool fans!!!!!

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  • 108. At 4:59pm on 02 Feb 2011, dave parker wrote:

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the House Rules.

  • 109. At 5:11pm on 02 Feb 2011, gooner8 wrote:

    Torres clearly made the right choice to leave, liverpool are going no-where, and ironically when he goes they buy one of he most talented strikers in europe in luis suarez, why cudnt they have forked the money out and got the deal done for him earlier in the transfer window, that way torres wud possibly have stayed, but he wants to win things and will now do that at chelsea, i think that it is too late for them to win the league, but i think that next season they wil be very strong, especially if they add one or 2 players which i sure they wil, it's chelsea after all. But torress and drogba up front looks like a deadly partnership, i think chelsea have to play the two up top as both drogba and torres ar too good to leave out, and therefore i feel sorry for anelka as he is going to have to make way for torres, especially if anncellotti chooses to go with one up front which i think is highly unlikely, however anelka played very well yesterday and torres and luiz's move will force the whole chelsea team to play better obviously in defence cos either alex or terry wil hav 2 make way for luiz and in midfield especially if chelsea go with 2 up front then that only leave space for 2 central midfielders meaning that mikel and ramires will have to work hard to try and force there way into the team ahead of lampard and essien.

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  • 110. At 5:12pm on 02 Feb 2011, TheArmBand wrote:

    Chelsea could not even sell their allocation of tickets in the CL Semi Final away to Barcelona. Big clubs would sell that allocation 5 or 10 times over.

    Buying a club and pumping hundreds of millions into it does not make it a big club. It just makes it a rich small club.

    History and a massive following are what make clubs big, neither of which Chelsea have.

    Roman is going to run out of managers that are willing to put up with him soon, IMO.

    Man City was still getting attendances of over 30,000 when they dropped two divisions to league 1. There is not many clubs that could pull that off.

    When Liverpool make 2-3 quality signings in the summer, which I'm sure you all believe these new owners are going to do, then we'll be a strong team next season.

    You haters can go on and on with your tripe about Liverpool being a mid table team and years away from any sort of challenge. Just as long as you know that we're all buzzing and looking forward to a bright future. Your pathetic attempts to squash the buzz are making us all the happier.

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  • 111. At 5:22pm on 02 Feb 2011, Rob wrote:

    98. Completely disagree. Shevchenko remians a legend in Milan. Likewise, Torres is a legend in Madrid and may well secure legendary status at Stamford Bridge. Medals are much more important to players with ambition. Besides, Torres is not from Liverpool. He didn't grow up on the Kop. He didn't play in Stanley Park. His move to Anfield was nothing more than a business transaction and now, he has outgrown Liverpool and moved forwards in his career. Who can blame him?

    Liverpool WERE a big club, but aren't anymore. Yes, they have a strong history but this is the modern game. If you want to capture nostalgia buy some vintage toys on eBay!

    Modern football is a business, ruled by money. If you don't like it, then cancel your Sky Sports subscription instead of contributing to the problem!

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  • 112. At 5:28pm on 02 Feb 2011, RedWhiteandermblue wrote:

    I'm a neutral, and Torres got me a little irate with his comments. You're paid scads of money to play a game for millions of passionate fans. When you leave, why is it too much to ask to say something like, "Loved the fans, loved the club, always be in my heart, etc..."?

    I also agree that Xabi Alonso was underrated. The key player in every sport is the playmaker.

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  • 113. At 6:17pm on 02 Feb 2011, RichardCrimp wrote:

    TheArmBand wrote: "Your pathetic attempts to squash the buzz are making us all the happier."

    And your pathetic attempts to denigrate Chelsea, a club that I have supported since 1973 (7 trs old) are little more than a sign of a baseless arrogance.

    The trouble with LFC fans living in Liverpool is that they simply believe that everyone else should buy into "their religion of Anfield" (a Spaniard included)? The truth of the matter is that, you're all as sick as pigs regarding the fallen star that was once a great team (you're still a great club, but the same could be said of Wolves - in terms of history), and most of us see you as anachronistic...

    Had you have been lucky enough to be part of 43,000 attendances at Chelsea when we were in the old 2nd Division, your comments regarding Chelsea's following would appear somewhat hollow, however, as usual your derision is based solely on the bitterness you have towards your own clubs failings.

    Good luck for the coming seasons LFC, and may all your hopes be fulfilled, as it is all you have at present, hope!

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  • 114. At 6:24pm on 02 Feb 2011, KingKennysreturn wrote:

    Can I blame Torres for wanting to go to a team that has a good chance of winning trophies including the Champions League when the team he was playing for realistically won't qualify for the Champions League next year? No. There was a stage that even Stevie G came close to signing for Chelsea but thought better of it given his ties to LFC. We could never expect Torres to have those same ties.
    However, can I blame Torres for putting in mediocre performances this season apart from when it suited him i.e. against Chelsea and when the transfer window opened? Yes.
    He has proved he has no honour by acting the way he did especially submitting the transfer request at the last minute. If you had asked me at the end of December I would have said sell him quick even for some way short of £50m but then suddenly when King Kenny returned he started to play. At the time I put this down to Kenny but now I am not so sure and it would appear that Torres was holding back for sometime in terms of the effort he was putting in. So as a lifelong Liverpool fan I am disappointed that such a great player has felt he needed to leave to win trophies but realistically I can understand why. But I will never understand or forgive the way in which Torres conducted himself over this season. It fell way short of what was expected or what he is capable of. He could have gone with his head held high if he had have put in a transfer request early I would have been disappointed yes but part of me would have understood. If he had played with 100% effort every match in the red shirt until he left again I would have understood. If he had done these things in time I would have looked back on his Liverpool career with fondness. But not now not the way he has treated the club and it's supporters who spend good money to watch him play and buy replica shirts. Some who can barely afford to do so. So shame on you Torres. I hope Chelseas poor run continues and LFC go from strength to strength. Whilst I admit it is unlikely it would be great if we could beat them on Sunday and beat them to 4th. YNWA

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  • 115. At 6:26pm on 02 Feb 2011, Sean wrote:

    Never in my whole life have I so moved by an incident that I needed to 'share'. But here it is. I too am a passionate Liverpool fan and I am gutted that Torres has gone. But surely this is football. Has he really been that disrespectful. By inference some of his comments were unnecessary but his other comments about LFC have been respectful haven't they. It's all a matter of ones perspective in my opinion. His words, really aimed at winning support from his new fans, hardly rub out all the good that he built at his time with us and nor for that matter does his poor form. He is a professional footballer. he wants to win trophies. I sincerely hope he is wrong in his assessment of our inability to compete at the level he wants but I can hardly fault his thinking. We have under achieved and his ambitions have not really been matched by our form almost at any time with his time with us. We have always been good to former players. It would be very sad if that was not extended to Torres. I wish him well but wish us better.

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  • 116. At 6:35pm on 02 Feb 2011, Spaced Invader wrote:

    At 01:02am on 02 Feb 2011, LFCinCA wrote:

    'I don't want to hear any BS from the other team supporters out there- LFC fans ARE some of the best if not THE best in the world.'


    Its a pretty safe bet in life that when anyone feels the need to tell you they're the best, they aren't...

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  • 117. At 6:40pm on 02 Feb 2011, Lewis Taylor wrote:

    As a neutral, i think Torres could of had a bit more respect for Liverpool, they were the ones who made his English chapter of his career.
    Chelsea do now have a strike force which could be as strong if not stronger than the mighty Barcelonas.
    I don't see why of all the strikers they choose to buy, Liverpool that is, choose to buy Andy Carroll who has scored is it, 11 goals in one half season and he's not able to play for 4-5 weeks?
    Suarez, yet another striker my club, United could of gone in for but NOOOOO.
    The signings Chelsea & Liverpool have signed add a little more doubt to my mind that we're unable to go the full season unbeaten.
    As long as we win the league though, i don't mind about all these signings that clubs make around us, we just need a signing to replace Owen in the summer and a keeper to replace VDS and i'll be happy even more :)

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  • 118. At 7:25pm on 02 Feb 2011, exsfman wrote:

    I absolutely agree with you No. 31. As a MU fan, I watch and admire the Liverpool football. As the world turns, Torres left the club and said something to juice up the upcoming match. I think it is all promo stuff. If I were a LFC fan, I would hope the club beating the Chelsea team on the pitch and getting the result. I would not be negative about Torres' comment about the club; instead I would try to channel the energy to shut him down and proof him wrong on every game. Isn't it all about competition? I would look at the future and the bright side of the signing of the two good strikers. Carrol and Suraez will improve the team and score a lot of goals for the club in the future; LFC fans need to value that Torres' transfer had a lot to do with the outcome of the signing. Set your goal higher and see if you can challenge the top spot from MU. I look forward to the next MU Vs LFC match.

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  • 119. At 7:36pm on 02 Feb 2011, Ciaran Fitzpatrick wrote:

    Let's have a look at what Torres said in his interview about Liverpool:

    "I only have good words about Liverpool. They made me a top player and gave me the chance to play at the top level.

    "I will never say anything bad about Liverpool. I have been very happy there but now the history is different and I am playing for Chelsea."

    Of course he'd going to say Chelsea are great; they just paid £50 million for him. And, at the moment, they are at a higher level than Liverpool. They're current league champions. As a Liverpool fan, I've no problem with him. It hurts horribly to see Torres training in a Chelsea top & I don't look forward to seeing him on Sunday, but he's left because the club's been a mess for years, & won't challenge for the title in the next 2 years at least. That's fair enough.

    Also, listen to Kenny Dalglish about transfers:

    Transfers happen. That's all.

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  • 120. At 7:41pm on 02 Feb 2011, cantona86 wrote:

    Maybe torres was gonna thank the liverpool fans until they started burning shirts with his name on. There are two sides to every story. The club made him what he is but at the same time he could have probably played for any team in the world but he chose to play for liverpool and he probably thinks he played a big part in their recent history so viewing the other as ungrateful works both ways. Liverpool fans should try to remember the good times they had with Fernando at his best. At a time when the club is entering a new phase with new owners and a new vision, the departure of a disinterested, under-performing Fernando, for 50m no less, was probably best for all parties.

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  • 121. At 7:42pm on 02 Feb 2011, GigiBuffon1 wrote:

    First, Julio Baptista signed for Malaga, not Deportivo.

    Secondly, Amauri is a striker, even though his goalscoring record is more akin to that of a full back.

    Sticking with Amauri, it's a massive relief he's gone, although I don't understand why any side in Serie A would want him. I think Matri will prove to be far better for the team, although I don't believe Marotta will pay 15.5m euros to sign him permanently.

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  • 122. At 7:55pm on 02 Feb 2011, Christopher Gill wrote:

    Can all you LFC "fans" give it a rest, you can shove your history cause you're not making it anymore are you?
    When was the last time you won the league? The FA Cup? The League Cup, yes you have won the Champions League, granted, and yes you are a great team in europe, i even used to watch your team in the 70's, 80's etc and always want you to win the cups you were in as you were a credit to English football, but the fans ruin all that by being so stuck up their own backsides thinking they are better than everyone else. Well boys & girls wake up and smell the coffee, you WERE the best once but not anymore, welcome to the new kids on the block WE ARE THE FAMOUS CFC, and we have the one & only EL NINO, Fernando Torres, welcome to the Bridge son!

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  • 123. At 8:29pm on 02 Feb 2011, Pabo Byungshin wrote:

    Can't help but be amused by some of the comments coming in from Liverpool fans on here... and, by the extension, the presumed attitude of big-team fans in general. How would you ever cope supporting a lower-division side, seeing your team's best players moving on to bigger clubs on a regular basis? Get some perspective, folks... and remember that the team is always bigger than any one player!

    The sanest Torres-related comments are those few that are attempting to point out that the lad is an Atletico boy. Some of you Koppites are making out like he's an academy kid who was born in a red jersey.

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  • 124. At 8:29pm on 02 Feb 2011, jay842 wrote:

    @ 6

    It's not gonna be hard to achieve more going forward than you did during Torres' time, as you never won anything while he was there!!

    Fernando Torres Chelsea's No. 9!!!

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  • 125. At 8:31pm on 02 Feb 2011, JamTay1 wrote:

    122. At 7:55pm on 02 Feb 2011, nikki7luc wrote:
    Can all you LFC "fans" give it a rest, you can shove your history cause you're not making it anymore are you?
    When was the last time you won the league? The FA Cup? The League Cup, yes you have won the Champions League, granted, and yes you are a great team in europe, i even used to watch your team in the 70's, 80's etc and always want you to win the cups you were in as you were a credit to English football, but the fans ruin all that by being so stuck up their own backsides thinking they are better than everyone else. Well boys & girls wake up and smell the coffee, you WERE the best once but not anymore, welcome to the new kids on the block WE ARE THE FAMOUS CFC, and we have the one & only EL NINO, Fernando Torres, welcome to the Bridge son!

    Sorry just to hard to resist....

    When did Chelsea last win the European Cup/Champions League?..... :o)

    Still while we are on that topic, Chelsea don't always have the best of luck with Spannish players. Remember Luis Garcia? Mourinho certainly does....... :o)

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  • 126. At 8:38pm on 02 Feb 2011, GigiBuffon1 wrote:

    A shame to see the European blog turn into a petty argument between Premier League fans. Can't you go and do it on a Premier League blog?

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  • 127. At 9:30pm on 02 Feb 2011, The_soul_patch_of_David_Villa wrote:

    98. At 3:59pm on 02 Feb 2011, TheArmBand wrote:

    What legacy has Shevchenko left behind?

    A huge one.

    He is the greatest player in his country's history, helped them to a WC quarter-final, and is an icon at Dynamo Kiev, AC Milan, and throughout the Ukraine.

    He is one of the best strikers of his generation.

    Only people whose footballing interest doesn't extend beyond the British Isles would judge him on his ill-fated spell at Chelsea, by which time, he was already on a downward spiral, as most 30 year old+ strikers are.

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  • 128. At 9:56pm on 02 Feb 2011, magnus bang wrote:

    Torres is a die-hard Atletico fan like you LFC supporters are die-hard for your club. Other clubs for him is simply a job and when he got a better offer from Chelsea he took it. He has also said in interviews that he want to win titles which he will not do in this current Liverpool team. So the main reason for him was maybe NOT the money but the chance of winning Champions League in the coming years.

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  • 129. At 10:53pm on 02 Feb 2011, relegationbattle wrote:

    Are any of these players really worth the money being paid for them ?
    Take a look at this article

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  • 130. At 10:54pm on 02 Feb 2011, thefrogstar wrote:

    I think Torres stayed longer at Liverpool than many other players of similar quality would have done. He has a world cup winners medal. He scored the goal that won the European championship. It's often seemed that him and Gerrard were carrying a team that was not good enough to win trophies, and now gives no assurance of Champions League football. Sooner or later he was bound to call it a day.

    I think Liverpool should be grateful. Looking at his susceptibility to injuries, the price is very very good. Once a striker starts getting regular injuries it's the beginning of the end. Look at Owen.

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  • 131. At 11:29pm on 02 Feb 2011, jonahmona wrote:

    LFC did very very well out of Torres, this is in line with the policy of buying & selling at the right age. Benitez gets 28m off his net spend (will he remind us of this?), LFC get 2 younger players, Torres will score a hatful at stamford bridge, and LFC won nowt with him anyway. they needed big changes which Dalglish is not messing about with.

    The big loser seems to be NCFC who now look a bit short on goals and the shops are shut. Some managers must dread the January window.

    Still a massive gamble on the big Geordie lad tho, but if he can start well & have the confidence to play his natural game then he can offer something different to Torres who can beat any world class defender to score but does not do a great deal to involve others.

    LFC have been absolute garbage this season, for whatever reason, and if something aint working, change it, and change it ASAP and for that alone Dalglish deserves respect. Losing Torres could be a blessing, especially as the cash was fair. No need to burn his shirt scousers, 50 squids them cost........if you pay for em like.

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  • 132. At 11:56pm on 02 Feb 2011, jonahmona wrote:

    Are these comments from Chelsea fans for real?

    Lets compare LFC's success with Chelsea's - one is bourne out of one great man's vision on how a club should be run, starting a legacy of dominance that would last for decades - the boot room, the Kop, Paisley, Tommy Smith, Keegan, Rush, Beating Real Madrid, Rome on thier own ground, AC Milan after being 3-0 down, bringing pride back to English football after the national teams failure to qualify for 2 world cups, taking the finest BRITISH players to far flung fields and emerging victorious, a team that always speaks with a local accent AND could even win on penalties...

    With Chelsea's story - a fashionable club that never dominated at any time until firstly a millionare (Harding) and then a Billionaire (guess who?) sunk squillions of Roubles into buying any and all of the foreign stars and managers they could, pricing thier traditional support out of the ground and allegedly taping up other teams english players to switch to them.

    I support neither but get real Chelsea fans, achieving and earning success through skill and vision will always be considered more noble than throwing money at it until it sticks.

    Headhunters indeed

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  • 133. At 00:18am on 03 Feb 2011, The_soul_patch_of_David_Villa wrote:

    132. At 11:56pm on 02 Feb 2011, jonahmona wrote:

    Come off it !

    I'm sure not even the most hardcore Chelsea fan would suggest that their historical achievements could hold a candle to those of Liverpool.

    ''Historical'' being the key word there.

    While Liverpool fans are justifiably proud of their exceptional domestic and international history, the fact is that that was then and this is now.

    It is very hard to argue against the fact that Chelsea are currently a more successful club, and that Chelsea are far more likely to mount a serious PL and CL challenge in the next few seasons.

    And for someone like Fernando Torres, these are the only considerations that will be relevant when he decides what's the best career move for him.

    The problem lies with idealistic fans who seem to expect a player to sacrifice his career and personal ambition for loyalty.

    This is completely unreasonable.

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  • 134. At 00:20am on 03 Feb 2011, youve been vermaelenated thats just fabrelous wrote:

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the House Rules.

  • 135. At 01:17am on 03 Feb 2011, RedddRussian wrote:

    Thought we've been discusing the transfers and their reasons, not the fans. Certainly not the fans were the reason why Torres would like to move, we adored him, supported and cheered for him even when he did not deliver.
    And you (#134) are on again about Hodgson. Wake up, if not his cowardly attitude that demoralized the players and fans altogether, we wouldn't have been on the 7th position now! We would have been in the top 4.
    So it is a question why the fans were disrespectful towards him. Because he disrespected the club's principles and ruined morale. Yes, nice gentleman to have a cup of tea with... although his after-match interviews made me want to fall asleep or go kill myself.
    I am telling you, if not Roy Hodgson and what he's done to the club in the matter of 6 months, Torres would not have turned his head elsewhere.

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  • 136. At 09:00am on 03 Feb 2011, lechambrevert wrote:

    135. How you can blame Hodgson for Liverpools demise is beyond me. He took over a club that was already on the slippery slope. Since their champions league win Mr Benitez seemed to make it his business to turn them into an average team. It only took him a few months at Inter to do the same. Admittedly Hodgson was probably not the man for the job at Liverpool but I dont see how this makes him cowardly. If you post your address I will gladly send you a dvd of Hodgsons interviews so you can do us all a favour

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  • 137. At 09:12am on 03 Feb 2011, tonyyeboahslibido wrote:

    To all the Liverpool fans still harpin on about how Liverpool are a bigger club.

    Maybe historically, even romantically in a footballing sense. But at the moment, Chelsea are the bigger club, and the bigger power.

    "ooo, Liverpool have 18 titles and 5 European Cups, clearly they are the bigger club...." etc;

    Bury have one two FA Cups, ergo more honours than, among others, Cardiff, Birmingham, Southampton and Coventry. Would you say that Bury are a bigger team?? Get over the past for God's sake.

    And this is coming from a Leeds team, until now all I had was the past, ha!

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  • 138. At 09:14am on 03 Feb 2011, tonyyeboahslibido wrote:

    Bury have one two FACups

    *Won....obviously. Goddammit........!

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  • 139. At 09:25am on 03 Feb 2011, lechambrevert wrote:

    137. The best username I've seen in a while..

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  • 140. At 09:41am on 03 Feb 2011, Smith87 wrote:

    What a dreadful article! The title is misleading - I thought I had missed out on a lot of drama across Europe, sadly not.

    The fact that you made a mistake in saying which team Baptista had signed for is truely shocking considering you are the 'Spanish' correspondant! Even wiki is up to date!

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  • 141. At 09:58am on 03 Feb 2011, Rob wrote:

    Re 134 - Good point, well made. I don't think Roy Hodgson would consider Liverpool fans "the best in the world"...or even the best in Merseyside. He went to Liverpool having just won Manager of the Year, so he can't be that bad. Unfortunately these self-proclaimed "great fans" we hear so much from didn't give him any support whatsoever, despite his success in keeping Torres in the summer. In fact, they made the Manchester United fans look like they love the Glazers!

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  • 142. At 10:03am on 03 Feb 2011, Kamana wrote:

    Some of the comments here, predictably from Chelsea fans, just show how totally ignorant they are to complain about the so-called "whinging" of Liverpool fans about this transfer.
    Let me spell it out to you; Torres was a hero at Liverpool, idolised by the supporters. I would say he was even more beloved than Gerrard by the Kop. The adoration Liverpool had for him was such that we were constantly making excuses for his poor performances this season. He's still not fit, the team is poor, Hodgson has dented his confidence, etc, etc.

    He came to us as a good player and we transformed him into a global superstar. Would Chelsea have paid £50M for him when he was still at Atletico? Of course not. His stock had risen while at Liverpool. It was at Liverpool he developed into the best striker in the world. Nobody would have given him that label prior to his move to Liverpool. Even the Spanish press and Atletico fans were stunned by how good he became under Benitez.

    Yet after all this Torres betrays Liverpool by demanding a move to Chelsea of all teams just 2 days before the close of the transfer window. Chelsea, with whom Liverpool had developed a bitter rivalry thanks to the squabbling between Benitez and Mourinho, and the countless matches they had against one another, almost each one filled with cynical moments that fostered such disdain between the two teams.

    Of course this will upset Liverpool supporters. He was playing terribly this season, clearly not giving it his all. And now we know why. He was sulking and moping and to deliberately play poorly is a disgraceful way to treat the club.
    The only good to come out of this transfer is that Liverpool received such a huge sum of money but that will never dampen the hurt felt by Liverpool fans by Torres' behaviour and choice of club.

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  • 143. At 10:51am on 03 Feb 2011, lechambrevert wrote:

    I still can't believe why people keep going on about history. To quote several managers "You are only as good as your most recent results". What good is history to teams like Preston or Burnley or Nottingham Forest. I'm sure that they would swap that history to be competing in the premiership now.

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  • 144. At 11:00am on 03 Feb 2011, lechambrevert wrote:

    Liverpool,fans,high,horse,get,off.... Use these six words in a sentence

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  • 145. At 11:32am on 03 Feb 2011, tonyyeboahslibido wrote:


    Too true mate, they can be such martyrs at times....It'll still be going on in 10/15 years time when, in all liklihood, they probably still won't have won the league!

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  • 146. At 8:29pm on 03 Feb 2011, Alastair10538 wrote:

    Alastair - thanks for the mail and your interest in the Glenn Hoddle Academy website and specifically Glenn's profile.

    At the time the profile was penned, Glenn's win rate as England manager, was only second to Sir Alf's record.

    The profile indicates that "He was the most successful England Manager since Sir Alf Ramsey."

    Although I have reviewed the results of Fabio Capello and appreciate that he too now, has guided the England team to more victories.

    I hope this clarifies things for you.



    Neil Duncanson

    On 2 Feb 2011, at 11:48, Alastair Cook wrote:

    Glenn Hoddle's profile claims he was the "most successful England manager since Alf Ramsey".

    Is there a statistical basis for this claim?

    More successful than Venables or Robson?

    Would he in fact have been the most successful, if his career had not been blighted by claiming that the handicapped were the result of their own preincarnated bad karma?

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  • 147. At 9:06pm on 03 Feb 2011, ukdutchman wrote:

    There are hardly any pundits who can describe te game as it is
    Players go to a hotel before the big day, they know everyting about their opponents; its a bit static to highlight some instances from ex players who konw there is more to it and for BBCC; bit boring and pridectable from comments match of the day; evry time think this comes to something patteres out to some bar talk; with two people who keep a tight grip on a pencil since they they dont know what to do with their hands

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  • 148. At 3:29pm on 07 Feb 2011, Ten_Thousand_Fists wrote:

    "New Inter Milan coach Leonardo clearly believes that new blood is necessary if they are to sustain a run in this season's Champions League and qualify for next season's competition, even if defending their Serie A and European crowns now looks highly unlikely after Rafa Benitez managed to undo most of the work achieved by his predecessor Jose Mourinho in little more than four months."

    4 points behind AC, one game in hand :)

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