Reports today suggest that Liverpool are on the verge of signing Dutch winger Eljero Elia for £13million. Previously I had called for the board not to give Hodgson funds to spend in this transfer window as I was almost certain that he would not be the manager for much longer. But if this transfer does go through, it will show that the board still back Hodgson and they may just be willing to give him the chance to shape his own team.
Elia has been compared to another current Liverpool Dutch player, Ryan Babel. Elia is only 23 years old which fits well in the new owners policy of buying young players. But I have my doubts about Elia. He had a fantastic season the last campaign but this season he has not lived up to expectations with his team Hamburg.
Elia has won the Johan Cruijff Award for “Young Player of the Year” in the Netherlands – an award that has previously been won by Arsenal legends Dennis Bergkamp and Marc Overmars as well as Robin van Persie, Arjen Robben and Rafael van der Vaart.
To me it seems like signing Elia would just be like signing another Ryan Babel, a player with so much promise with bags of pace but just simply never lived up to expectations. I hope I am proved wrong if Elia signs for Liverpool and he comes into the team and is a success.
There is no doubt that we need some pace in our current team and if Elia can provide the pace to unlock the oppositions defence then we will be better off. Let us just hope Hodgson will play him in his right position and not stick him in central midfield!