It seems patience is wearing thin at Liverpool. Peter Crouch, having already refused to sign a new deal and seemingly upset with the constant rotation is now seen as superfluous by Rafa Benitez who is eager to cash in on the giant striker in January (Mail on Sunday). According to the paper, Benitez’s patience with his centre-forward has finally snapped following Crouch’s lacklustre performance in the 1-0 midweek defeat by Marseille and he is unlikely to play against Tottenham today.
This is one of those issues that you can kind of see both sides to and still not know whoÂ is in the wrong. The England international was the top scorer last season across all competitions with 18 strikes from 31 starts. This term he has found his chances limited by the arrival of new forwards Andriy Voronin and Fernando Torres. He is at the age where first team football is crucial, especially with Euro 2008 around the corner. It seems both sides should cut their losses and the 26-year-old should find a new home.
Maybe his new home could be the Emirates (various), the claims that Arsene Wenger may make a bid for Crouch are further fuelled by comments he made last week about a former Arsenal favourite who bares a similarity to the Reds’ star. “It is one of my biggest regrets that Niall Quinn was not here during my time. I felt he was an intelligent player. It would have been a good combination with Thierry Henry. What I like with Niall Quinn is if you look at the player who played next to him, he always scored 40 goals because he had a hand for his head and he just put the ball where you were. He was a team player. A top-class player makes other players look good and he had that quality.” (Irish Independent)
Quinn and Crouch are twins from the same pod in so much as they are both tall front men. Niall was a more bulky battler, but would it be a bridge to far to see Crouch fulfilling a role for Wenger? Arsenal fans, what do you think?
It has been reported that Dutch giants Ajax are ready to offer their manager’s job to Tottenham boss Martin Jol (News of the World). Apparently the under-fire Spurs boss will be offered the Ajax post when Henk Ten Cate moves to Chelsea.
An insider at the Amerstdam club stated: “Jol is certainly the club’s No 1 choice to succeed Henk ten Cate. Ajax have tried unsuccessfully to get Jol in the past but it looks likely they will finally get him now.”
I find it unlikely that Chelsea will go from one hideously under-qualified manager, Avram Grant, and replace him with the Ajax boss who, albeit unluckily, hasnâ€™t even won a Dutch title as coach. The coach narrowly missed out on the Eredivisie title last time around and has done well in the past at Vitesse, but he is not exactly the â€˜bigâ€™ name that would appease the west London faithful. Jol to Ajax is a possibility on the other hand as I am sure that once he has been axed by his ungrateful board – that will happen sooner or later – he will be happy with the unobtrusive world of Dutch football.
Aston Villa have looked pretty good so far this season and could push for a European place. Winger Ashley Young has stated that he was right to choose Aston Villa over West Ham last January (various).”West Ham did come in for me and I had talks with them, but I chose Villa over West Ham and I believe I made the right choice and I’m happy here. From the time I joined the club I knew it was going places.”
It is a common trait in football right now to kind of stick the knife in, there seems no reason to in effect bad mouth an opponent. Its all very well to say that he made a good decision in choosing Villa, and it seems at present to be working well for the youngster. But is it necessary to point out that he opted against West Ham?