Michael Sweeting discusses the positives and negatives of signing Dutch international Wesley Sneijder from Inter Milan.
The positives to signing Wesley Sneijder are there for all to see.
He’s at his peak age at 28, plays in a position we are short in and would be a great experienced head for our rising stars to aspire to. You can imagine the influence Sneijder and Gerrard would have on the likes of Shelvey, Suso and Coady. Potentially you are looking at a Gary McAllister style guiding hand for our youngsters who also has so much to offer the club both on and off the pitch.
With someone like Sneijder in behind a front three of Suarez, Borini and Sturridge it becomes a genuine top four side, capable of breaking down any defence in English football.
Off the pitch he would bring in exorbitant amounts of money through sponsorship and shirt deals. FSG apparently desire ‘sexy’ footballers, well I dare anyone to look the Dutchman in the eyes and not require a cold shower. Potentially, he pays for himself – albeit that’s quite a stretch in logic – if he fires us to the Champions League.
However, is it really viable? His wages will have to be a minimum of £120,000 a week, according to reports. Liverpool are currently going through a slightly painful system of necessary cut backs in wages and playing staff – we are beginning to look like a proper business again – making good profits and investing carefully, strategically to position ourselves for the years ahead when the money begins to dry up around the league.
Would Sneijder’s signing make a statement that we simply can’t live up to? We are a very young side, is it really wise to tell the rest of the league, to tell the fanbase that we are ready for the level Sneijder would possibly elevate us towards? I’m not sure we are.
Sneijder, a Dutch maestro, a world class footballer and a bargain at £6.2m. But for Liverpool it is the wrong deal at the wrong time. We are building, we are progressing, but we do it slowly.
Signing Sneijder accelerates that level of progress too quickly, we would be forced to progress it again in the summer – meaning more expensive signings – less chances for young players and quick return to the financial folly that has plagued the club for decades.
As sad as it is to say, Sneijder is simply not right for us at the point in time. There’ll be others though – when we are ready – and we’ll be in the position to take them.
Wesley is the icing on the cake we haven’t made yet. The timing is wrong.
UPDATE: Sneijder has now signed for Galatasaray.