According to Tuttosport in Italy, Inter’s Sporting Director Marco Branca has enquired about the availability of Liverpool’s Raul Meireles. For most Liverpool fans, the reaction to any enquiry from Inter would be met with a staunch rebuttal, but speculation has arisen over the 28 year old’s future in recent days.
For me, and many other Reds fans, the reaction is one of confusion as to why we would allow such a talented player to leave the club. The Portuguese international did take some time to settle, as any player would after moving from the Portuguese league, but he is gradually become an integral member of the team as the 2010/11 season progressed. His run of five goals in six games between January and February was certainly a highlight of the season, and his ability to pass with precision and to make some telling contributions in matches has led to much praise for the 28 year old. Still speculation persists, and I have listed a few reasons below that have been used as explanations for the sale talk.
1) No Place in Kenny’s XI – Raul has played wide right, wide left, central midfield and attacking midfield since he arrived at Anfield, and although the Portuguese international is very adaptable, Kenny Dalglish believes he has nowhere to fit the player into his starting eleven. The purchase of Jordan Henderson and the impending capture of Charlie Adam mean Meireles may have limited game time, and it maybe best to move the player on.
2) Contract Issues – It has also been speculated that Meireles signed a contract last summer in view to an increased wage hike if his first season was a success. According to the reports, it was an agreement put in place last summer by Roy Hodgson and the previous owners, but new owners Fenway Sports Group are unwilling to sanction an increase in wages for a 28 year old.
3) Age and Injury Problems – At 28, Meireles maybe in the prime of his career, but he is also at the peak of his saleable value, and combined with the niggling injuries he had last season, Dalglish, Comolli and FSG may believe it is the best economically to sell the player for the £14million being mooted, especially if they have younger players such as Henderson and Adam ready to replace him in the wings.
To make it clear, I am not saying that any of these reasons are actually true, but they have been used in reports to explain why Meireles maybe sold. I for one want Raul to stay at the club as I believe we will see the best of him next season. I still don’t understand why we are interested in Charlie Adam though, especially when Meireles plays in the same position and has many attributes superior to the Scot. If the 1st September comes around and we have BOTH Meireles and Adam in the squad to choose from though, we will have tremendous strength in depth and it could help us during the season.
Article is courtesy of David at Live4Liverpool