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Exclusive: Why Liverpool’s Victor Valdes Move Collapsed

Despite the deal reaching an advanced stage, Liverpool pulled out of a move to snap up former Barcelona keeper Victor Valdes on a free transfer last week.

LONDON, ENGLAND - Wednesday, May 6, 2009: Barcelona's goalkeeper Victor Valdes during the UEFA Champions League Semi-Final 2nd Leg match against Chelsea at Stamford Bridge. (Photo by David Rawcliffe/Propaganda)


The 32-year old Spaniard flew into the UK last week with his agent, Gines Carvajal, in an attempt to complete a deal that would have taken him to Anfield. The player’s representatives were even invited by the club to attend the Champions League match with Real Madrid.

Valdes was eager to come to Anfield and it is understood that terms had been agreed.

However the deal was complicated by certain demands made by the player and due to the fact Valdes was still several weeks away from being ready to undergo a medical.

Sources close to the deal have suggested that one of the major complications to completing a deal was the fact that Valdes wanted assurances he would be the club’s number one goalkeeper.

Liverpool were simply not willing to give him that assurance, especially with the player not yet match-fit and also because the club had not been able to scrutinise the players medical files and test out the ACL injury he suffered back in March.

As a result, the club decided to walk away from the deal and concentrate on other targets.

The club seem certain to move for another stopper in January to offer tougher competition for Simon Mignolet. Recent reports have linked Liverpool with Espanyol’s Kiko Casilla and Fiorentina’s Brazilian keeper Norberto Neto. Petr Cech and Iker Casillas have also been linked.

Once again – as with the Loic Remy situation in the summer – the breakdown of this deal highlights the complexities in completing transfers, due to the many different elements that need to be satisfied during negotiations. Nothing is ever certain until the player is photographed holding up a Liverpool scarf or signing his contract alongside Ian Ayre.

Valdes himself has subsequently been invited to continue his rehabilitation with Manchester United. It must be stressed he hasn’t been offered a deal to sign for the club and their manager Louis van Gaal will also want assurances that he has overcome his injury before he is likely to be offered a contract.

For those who think it is a strange choice for Valdes with David de Gea firmly established as the club’s number one keeper, it is worth considering that there have been reports that Real Madrid are keen to bring the United stopper back to Spain. Valdes may therefore believe there will be an opportunity to stake a claim to become the club’s number one in the short-term.

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