Liverpool fans have a fair bit to feel aggrieved at this season. Landing Jurgen Klopp, one of the most recognisable and sought-after managers in world football, is perhaps the only thing Reds fans can actually be happy with this season. That and a few decent performances in a sea of bad ones.
There’s no open revolt – other than a perfectly justifiable walk-out over ticket prices – but surely they can be forgiven for feeling a bit miffed at just how their team have plodded along quite so quietly this season so far. It may still yield a League Cup trophy – we shall see this weekend if it will – but their best chance of Champions League football is surely the Europa League. And given their performance in Germany last week, they look a long way from winning that, even if a 0-0 draw away from home sets them up nicely enough for the home leg.
Probably the most galling part of the season so far, however, must have been the Alex Teixeira debacle. Shakhtar Donetsk were adamant that they wouldn’t sell the Brazilian star for the price that Liverpool were willing to pay. So, as Liverpool didn’t stump up the cash, willing to wait until the summer to buy him, the transfer deadline came and passed. Cue Chinese club Jiangsu Suning’s arrival to the table with a barrow-load of cash, paying exactly what Donetsk wanted and the Ukrainians weren’t kidding. Off Teixeira went to China instead of Liverpool. And with the window closing, there was nothing Klopp or the mysterious transfer committee could do about it.
And today, in Asia’s Champions League, Teixeira was showing his skills to a Chinese audience instead of an English one.
Alex Teixeira in the Asian Champions League today pic.twitter.com/xIQ40reBwV
— 101 Great Goals (@101greatgoals) February 23, 2016
Liverpool fans might say they never wanted him anyway. And it may be true that Liverpool simply didn’t want him at the price Shakhtar quoted. But if it was the case that they simply failed to stump up the money for a player who could have made a difference this season then Liverpool fans will have a right to be miffed about this season as a whole. Floating around sixth to eighth place shouldn’t really be acceptable – surely investment in the playing squad and backing the manager in the transfer window is the answer.
Or perhaps not. Maybe Steven Caulker is exactly the attacking option Jurgen Klopp felt he needed to lead Liverpool to success this season after all.