Gareth Bale, Wayne Rooney and Luis Suarez all seem to be set on leaving their respective clubs. Understandably, Tottenham Hotspur, Manchester United and Liverpool aren’t willing to let their star players go easily.
Bale and Suarez are both top quality players and it goes without saying they should both be playing with Europe’s elite in the Champions League. Whilst Rooney is a versatile player, his preferred position is striker, so it’s only reasonable to assume that a player of his calibre should be able to force his way into the starting line-up of most (if not all) teams, in his preferred position.
Tottenham and Liverpool are both top four contenders for the Premier League this season, whilst United are contenders for the title. So it also goes without saying that none of these clubs are keen to strengthen domestic rivals by selling their star players to them. In an increasingly competitive European transfer market there are an increasingly large amount of potential destinations for top quality players like these three, which won’t mean strengthening a domestic rival.
Whilst Bale and Suarez have been the subject of bids and speculation from the continent's top teams, Rooney hasn't. However, if the player was to be listed as available for transfer, there would definitely be an influx of interest in the England man.
There seems little point in forcing a player who doesn’t want to play for you, to do so against their will. For big Premier League teams like these three, surely it is worth cashing in on their want-away stars and buying players who have a genuine desire to play for them?
Take Rooney as an example; the player has two years remaining on his contract at United and at 27; his current transfer value is around £30million. Assuming the player does want to leave, United can either cash in this summer (not by selling to a domestic rival) and move on as amicably as possible or hold on to Rooney, let him run his contract down and leave on a free in two years’ time.
Whilst United fans may find both scenarios hard to stomach, they are inevitable if the player chooses he wants to leave the club. If they decide to cash in, they can re-invest and strengthen; if they choose to run his contract down, they face damaging their own reputation, as well as Rooney’s; not to mention robbing one of England's best strikers of his peak physical years at the highest possible level.
It’s the equivalent of a child saying: ‘if I can’t have him, no-one can’. Spurs and Liverpool are in similar situations with Bale and Suarez.
United, Spurs and Liverpool need to grow up and resolve these transfer matters quickly and gracefully. There is no point in trying to make someone play for you, who simply doesn’t want to. And it’s as simple as that. Just ask Carlos Tevez.
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