February 2, 2011

What a great deadline day

by Dan Bilicki In: Basketball, Soccer

It may be two days after everything went down, but I have to say it has been a long time since I was as excited during a deadline day since Monday. It wasn’t like a MLB trade deadline, where it’s mainly prospects that usually change teams, or the NBA’s trade deadline where many of the stars are dealt earlier in the season and the cap makes movement difficult, or even the NHL trade deadline, where it’s mainly role players being shipped to contenders. No, European soccer’s transfer deadline day had a ton of intrigue, with stars switching squads and leagues and a flurry of activity right up to the buzzer.

We even saw two transfer records happen, something that is extremely rare during the January window. Fernando Torres became the most expensive player bought by an English club and Andrew Carroll became the most expensive Englishman ever sold. I guess that’s the sort of thing that happens when rumoured financial fair play rules are coming into effect soon.

Torres moves away from Liverpool to London, where he’s joining one of the richest and most successful clubs of recent times, Chelsea. He’ll instantly form one of the best forward tandems in the world with Didier Drogba and also provide a striker of the future from when the Ivorian eventually retires. But the question remains: What is he going to do about that “You’ll never walk alone” tattoo? Ouch.

Liverpool, hot after selling Torres found his “replacement” in Newcastle’s Andy Carroll. The 22-year-old striker may be trouble off the pitch, but he’s a solid target man on it. Pairing up with other transfer window signing, Uruguayan volleyball sensation Luis Suarez, the Reds shouldn’t miss El Nino’s production as much as you would think. But the question remains: How long until Carroll gets into a Mersyside bar brawl?

Chelsea was also able to land David Luiz to patch up their at times porous back four, but the real problem there is that they think too much like attackers instead of defenders. Their “rock” and captain John Terry has been known to let a forward or two waltz around him.

Now, we just have to see how these new players adapt to new systems and if they can propel their clubs to glory, either in the Premiership, or in Chelsea’s case the Champions League. Both clubs have some work to do after strings of poor form and with Manchester United running away with things it’ll be hard for either to get to the top of the table without the Red Devils slipping.

Leave a Reply