I expect I was not the only Liverpool fan who woke up this morning feeling emotionally drained after yesterday’s transfer deadline day.
Like many other fans, I watched the drama unfold via Twitter, and the rumours were relentless. One minute Torres was in a helicopter to London, the next, he was still at Melwood. Then Liverpool are getting £48 million plus Anelka, then Anelka was not part of the deal. Oh my God, we have put in a bid for Andy Carroll. Newcastle have rejected it. No, they haven’t. Yes, they have, no they haven’t.
Manchester United are outbidding Liverpool for Charlie Adam. No, they are not interested. And so it went on, for hours and hours. One thing I also noticed, and which may raise some eyebrows, is that Twitter was way ahead of many established media outlets with all of the rumours, news and confirmation of done deals.
No doubt I am not alone in being puzzled over the timing of the Torres transfer request. It seemed odd that he put it in only a few days before the window closed; surely if he was unhappy, he would have put it in earlier? I did read one report late on Sunday evening, suggesting that the player was furious with his agent for putting in the transfer request AFTER Liverpool had signed Luis Suarez from Benfica and was trying to backtrack on it.
To me, this had a ring of truth to it, and it was a straw I desperately clung to until Liverpool put in the initial bid for Carroll. Maybe it was true, but Liverpool considered that an increased bid from Chelsea of £50 million to be an offer too good to refuse. I imagine we shall find out the whole story behind the timing of the transfer request in the fullness of time.
As for the move itself, it remains to be seen whether it is a mistake for the player or not. He will not feel the intensity of the love he got from the Liverpool fans at Chelsea – and that is not a biased Liverpool fan talking, those are sentiments expressed by respected journalist Henry Winter. However, I believe that Torres will not receive anything like the adulation he received at Anfield unless he returns to Spain.
I have been feeling a little sorry for Luis Suarez, as his arrival at Liverpool seems to have been rather overshadowed by the Torres saga. He certainly seems happy to be at the club, but let’s hope that his enthusiasm has not been dampened at all by the knowledge that he will now be partnering Carroll up front, rather than Torres.
This is not to disrespect Carroll at all, he has scored more Premiership goals this season than Torres (11 vs. 9) and is certainly a promising player, but he is not the world class striker that Torres is.
We have no alternative now than to look forward with hope. No player, no matter how good, is, or will ever be, more important than Liverpool Football Club. As for the Liverpool fans burning their ‘Torres 9’ shirts: shame on you. That badge on the front of the shirt is what matters, not the name on the back.
Disclaimer: The views in this article are that of the writer and may not replicate those of the Professional Footballers' Association.