Barcelona Transfer News: Daniel Agger Snub Rules out Ideal Summer Signing
In securing the signature of starlet sensation Neymar earlier this summer, Barcelona added another impressive component to what was already a near faultless Blaugrana attack.
However, every side has its weaknesses, and if one were to be picked from Gerardo Martino’s squad, it undoubtedly lies in the defensive ranks.
In recent weeks, Daniel Agger and David Luiz have emerged as candidates to fill that particular void, although most recent reports from the Mirror’s John Cross state that both of those ships have sailed.
David Maddock, also of the Mirror, has backed such claims up, adding that Agger remains loyal to the Liverpool cause and that the Danish international wouldn’t go about his business in the same “transfer-chasing” way that Luis Suarez has.
While Agger’s run at Anfield doesn’t exactly fall in line with the club’s most prosperous era in football, the centre-back has been a marvel for the Reds in recent seasons, one of the few true stars in a largely disappointing time for the club.
Bleacher Report’s Karl Matchett took to Twitter to voice similar feelings, evidently viewing Barca’s recent bid as nothing short of insufficient:
For £15 million, Barcelona can have exactly one of Agger's bootlaces.— Karl Matchett (@karlmatchett) August 7, 2013
As such, Barcelona can only rue what would have been the perfect fit for the Camp Nou side given the current possibilities.
At 28 years of age, Agger by no means holds as much resale value as Luiz might, but is now experiencing the best period of his playing career.
What’s more, Barca aren’t in need of a centre-back for tomorrow, they’re in need of a player who can add stability to an otherwise creaky back line right now.
Who should Barcelona chase as their primary defensive target?
At the moment, Gerard Pique and Javier Mascherano will be looked at as the prime central defenders under Martino while Carles Puyol is a slightly less reliable asset due to injury. Meanwhile Martin Montoya and Marc Bartra will be going through their graduation from La Masia but are by no means to be considered first-choice options.
Last term, Agger completed 89 percent of his passes, forming a very capable possession-based trio alongside either Martin Skrtel or Jamie Carragher at centre-back and Pepe Reina in goal.
That experience with Reina and the frequency with which the Liverpool defence were happy to play with the ball from the back is something that will only have enamoured the Dane’s style with what Barca always strive to enforce.
It’s the defensive side of things where Agger would lend the biggest helping hand, however, after he muddled in with eight defensive actions per game on average last season, a higher ratio than any Barcelona player could manage.
Reds fans everywhere can be glad to hang on to such a talent, too. Rodgers was reported by the Daily Mirror in the aforementioned article by David Maddock as saying:
Daniel has given me his word that he loves Liverpool and I will expect him to be here. He had chances to leave, but told me as long as we wanted him here, then he wanted to stay.
He's been brilliant, that is why we have given him the vice-captaincy. The one thing I got from him from the very first conversation is loyalty.
Granted, the English side probably welcome more opposition chances than Barca do, but Agger would be as likely as anyone else to benefit from that alleviated pressure.
It’s no secret that one of Luiz’s more controversial attributes is his tendency to run forward with the ball, attacking whenever possible.
While that helping hand in attack would be useful to some, it’s an assured central presence that Barcelona require at the moment, and Agger reaffirming his Liverpool loyalty is a blow the Spanish titans could have done without.
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