Liverpool FC: Is Kenny Dalglish Turning Liverpool into Arsenal of Recent Years?
From the very offset of this article, I must state that I loved Kenny Dalglish as a player and later admired him as a manager and was extremely disappointed when the board rejected his application and appointed Roy Hodgson as Liverpool FC manager following the departure of Rafa Benitez.
I rejoiced when the new owners turned to Dalglish when a custodian to our great club was needed to steer the club into a new era.
When Dalglish smashed the club transfer record, that was only just after smashed with the Luis Suarez transfer, by bringing in Andy Carroll, many celebrated the coup and heralded it as a great piece of business.
But, there were also those that raised an eyebrow and stemmed the enthusiasm with a little well meant caution. Simply not joining the bandwagon of praise did not in any way mean that their love for the club should have been put into question. Healthy constructive debate is the best way forward.
Liverpool FC and Dalglish sanctioned the spending of £35 million on a 22-year-old player that has, admittedly, only had around half a season in the Premiership. Again, doubters would say that Dalglish is buying the player that Carroll can be, over the player that he currently is.
The next foray into the transfer market has seen the signing of Jordan Henderson from Sunderland. Henderson, a 20-year-old central midfielder, has great promise and already has been capped for England. The fee for this rising star was a whooping £20 million; eyebrows have again been raised.
Wickham is without doubt a player of great promise; the 18-year-old has been slapped with an £11 million price tag by his club.
Liverpool will most likely have to come close to this evaluation if they are to get their man.
As stated at the beginning of this piece, in King Kenny I trust, but I am also just a little bit weary that we are accumulating expensive unproven talent that MAY bring success and then again MAY be a huge waste of resources.
Arsenal over the last years have, infamously, not won a trophy and manager Arsene Wenger keeps maintaining that his young team is maturing. Many are beginning to lose faith in the Wenger vision, and there have been a few pundits even claiming that George Graham was a better manager for the Gunners than the current Frenchman.
Agreed, Liverpool will have an impressive array of young talent at their disposal next season, young new signings along with the crop of homegrown youngsters. But fans hope that we will not be heading the way of Arsenal.
Liverpool and Dalglish are heading into a new era for the club, and we, as fans, want nothing more than to see our club successful again. If Dalglish is going to bring the title back to Anfield, then he will have to gel a team of old heads and young stars champing at the bit.
Arsenal packed their team a few years ago with young emerging talent; from defense, midfield, right through to their forward line, the players were young upcoming stars. They may not have been household names, but then again, one could argue that neither are those that Liverpool have and are looking to acquire.
A blend of youth and experience is what is required. From the transfer policy that Dalglish is operating, it is clear that he believes that he has the experience in his squad already and wants to add more youth.
Fans are eagerly awaiting the further arrivals at Anfield; a few senior players or the likes of Charlie Adam would keep the doubters at bay and increase the average age of Liverpool's new arrivals out of the late teens.
In Dalglish and Damien Comolli, the future of the club is in good hands, and the future does indeed look bright as we head into a new, young era. If there is one thing that all fans must now exercise, it is patience.
The title may not be coming next season, but the groundworks are being laid for its imminent arrival. But the worst thing that could happen is that the new Liverpool, in time, gets the label that Arsenal currently has: an "almost team of great potential champions."
One hopes not.
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