One of Rafa Benitez’s biggest mistakes whilst he was still manager of Liverpool was trying to sign Aston Villa’s Gareth Barry at the expense of losing Xabi Alonso. Benitez had this fantasy of Gerrard and Barry in midfield for Liverpool but his dreams never came through. And instead he never got the chance to sign Barry and at the same time lost Xabi Alonso to Real Madrid.
Gareth Barry opted to join Manchester City ahead of Liverpool and the midfielder has revealed why.
“I remember when the transfer saga was going on, I was watching a Liverpool friendly [against Lazio at Anfield] and the home fans were singing, ‘you can stick your Gareth Barry up you’re a***’,” Barry said in the Daily Telegraph.
“I was at home, but I could just hear it vaguely. That might have got into my head a little bit.
“Liverpool were still interested when I decided to join City. I thought about it really hard, but the things the club were talking about, I felt City were on the up, whereas Liverpool were maybe finding it a bit tougher than City.
“It wasn’t an easy decision. I was signing on promises being made really and, in football, promises get made all the time.
“They can backfire and people can end up saying they made the wrong decision. But sitting here now, I think it has been a very good decision.
“Four years on, people say to me that I’ve made the right decision joining City. Obviously Liverpool is a fantastic club with a great following but I won the FA Cup last year and I’ve played in the Champions League this season.”
I am sure Barry is laughing at us now as he has seen where we stand and where Manchester City are: challenging for the title. There is nothing more I would love than for Liverpool to knock Manchester City out of the Carling cup tonight (Wednesday) and show Gareth Barry that we are still a much bigger club than Manchester City could every dream of.
It is a shame to the game of football that the power of money has taken over. We saw Real Madrid do it first by buying all the best players in the world and building them in one team. Chelsea also did that in the past and they won some titles now with the money at Manchester City, they are close to buying their way to the title. But then again, that is just how football is these days, it is about the club with the most money being successful.
I look at our situation at Liverpool: we got in new owners who were not afraid to spend money. They bank rolled Kenny Dalglish’s shopping spree for new players and it is fair enough to say that some of his signings have not worked out. Now is there more money for Kenny to spend or was that it? Is he going to have to make do with the players he has or will we see another huge outlay of players come the summer?