Agger – To sell or not to sell?

Reports on Monday that Liverpool would sell defender Daniel Agger if a bid of the right price comes in have been met with much derision among Liverpool supporters.

It has been reported that Man City have had two bids for the 27 year old Dane rejected this summer but that Liverpool would be willing to sell if they were to bid over £20m.

City are expected to return with a third bid imminently. And Liverpool have not ruled out selling one of their key players, despite the player being happy at the club.

There are numerous reasons not to sell, but also some reasons why a bid may be too good to turn down.

Perhaps, though, what is most worrying is that already this summer we have seen Maxi Rodriguez, Dirk Kuyt and Alberto Aquilani leave, while Craig Bellamy is on the verge of sealing his departure to Cardiff and Andy Carroll is available at the right price. Thus far we have only seen Fabio Borini arrive.

Add in the admission that Liverpool are exploring loan signings, supporters are beginning to worry about the lack of finances being made on offer to the new manager.

If you look at the Liverpool squad, we have plenty of youth and potential but very few players who you would consider in their “prime“. Two that you would regard in that bracket are Martin Skrtel and Agger. Both 27, both have performed very well in the last 18 months, and both work well and compliment each other superbly in the heart of the defence.

Those who have left this summer have been experienced players. Buying young may be great for the future, but what we lack is players who can make a big impression immediately and have the experience to develop the younger players in the squad.

When Brendan Rodgers was appointed Agger was one of those players you looked at who would fit in to his system and style of play and would benefit from the Northern Irishman’s appointment.

Back in March, EPL Index discussed Liverpool’s defence with and without Agger, finding that the Dane’s absence also affected the team shape as a whole and particularly Skrtel and Pepe Reina. Agger’s tackles and duels are higher as he presses the ball higher up the field – a tactic Rodgers likes to employ.

Of course, it would be disappointing to again lose one of our key players to a ‘top’ team. Maybe it’s this realisation that we are no longer at that ‘top table’ that is more vexing. Five years ago, when a player left Liverpool his career would only go in one direction, it’s the way it’s always been. But in recent times we’ve seen Xabi Alonso – and Alvaro Arbeloa – head off to Real Madrid, Javier Mascherano to Barcelona, Fernando Torres to Chelsea (while his time there may not have been a personal success Chelsea have finished above us in recent times and are the current European Champions).

But then there’s Agger’s injury record – the statistic that he has featured in only 46% of our games since 2006. Therefore, would a bid of around £22m to £25m be too good to turn down?

My overall opinion here is that while the money on offer might be good, right now we need Agger much more than we need the money. He is a key member of the squad and right now we need to keep those few players who have experience – especially when in this case the player himself has said he is happy at the club and is not pushing for a move away (unlike those mentioned above).

Would you sell Agger? How much is he worth? Let us know in the comments below.

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