MARK it in your calendar: Tuesday 27th August – the day Oussama Assaidi left Liverpool Football Club. If you don’t, you’ll probably forget he was ever a Liverpool player!
Of course, it’s only a loan move but given that his move, and subsequent ‘career’, at Liverpool FC appears to be nothing short of a slightly costly joke it is perhaps for the best that he has been moved on.
I genuinely hope for the Moroccan that he can flourish at Stoke and that his form will lead to a permanent move because I never like to see a footballer waste his career on a bench when he has talent that could be used elsewhere.
The most interesting aspect of Assaidi’s loan move however, is that it would seem to suggest that a player in a similar position will be on his way in to fill the ‘void’ left by the winger.
Indeed, in recent days the club has been heavily linked with a loan move for Chelsea’s Victor Moses; an interesting move, if it comes off, but it’s questionable whether it would be a worthwhile one, given that he is reportedly on a fairly impressive after-tax wage and that Chelsea are also asking for a loan fee fairly close to what we paid to bring Assaidi in permanently.
That’s not to say I don’t rate Moses, I do. He’s a good prospect, with a fair bit of Premier League experience. But at the moment, that’s all he is: a prospect. He looked fairly promising during his brief appearances for Chelsea last season and his form for Wigan clearly prompted them to make a move for the winger but would he really be an improvement on two great, pacey prospects we already have in Sterling and Ibe? I think most Reds would agree that he wouldn’t, with only his added experience being the difference between the three.
Whether this is true or not, he clearly doesn’t feel he’s a starter and any offer from Liverpool would probably have to be a permanent one and somewhere in the region of £25-£30 million. Whether we could pay this or not is irrelevant really though, as it’s unlikely a top midfielder like Mata would be prepared to miss out on Champions League football.
I have always been a fan of the idea that ‘you’ll never know unless you try’ though so I genuinely believe that if we’re to make a move for any Chelsea squad player in the next few days it should only be Mata.
Regardless of who it is though, it is fairly clear that Liverpool will be making moves in the next few days to bring in another attacking player and with Assaidi now gone it would make no sense to simply replace a squad player with a squad player.
We need a player that can provide a real attacking threat and enable Coutinho to come in from the left, into his rightful place down the centre, just behind Sturridge/Suarez and it promises to be a very interesting few days indeed as we build up to transfer deadline day.