COS contributor Aquaman takes a look at the players Rafa has ushered out of the Anfield exit since his arrival at the club.
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In my last article I discussed the amount of money that Rafa Benitez has spent on new players in his five years in charge. The flip side of the coin would, of course, be the players that he has sold during this time. This also gives us a chance to examine Rafa’s net spend as opposed to his gross.
A brief summary of the previous article. Rafa has bought 47 players for a total of 232 million pounds. Of the 47 purchses, 26 cost less than 5 mil each and 14.24 mil in total. This leaves the spending for the rest at 216 mil for 21 players (bearing in mind that Gerrard and Carra were already at the club).
Despite this, the argument remains that if 47 players have entered the club, then surely we have too many iffy players.
Well. In Rafa’s 5 years, 64 players have left the club. Some were sold, most were allowed to leave. of these 64 players, 20 were ones that Rafa bought himself. Interestingly of these 20, Rafa has made a profit on 10 of them (38.19 mil), and made a loss on 7 (31 mil). So while this equates to only a profit of 7.19 mil in total, this does mean that any losses that Rafa has made from bad signings (Pennant and Keane) has been more than recouped from his other transfer dealings.
So for all the comments of “Rafa buys too many players”, in truth the club has 17 fewer players than when Rafa arrived (granted a fair chunk of these may be Academy graduates so maybe we’re even).
Then there are the other 44 players from Houllier’s reign that Rafa has been ridding us of. All of these players were sold for 36.33 mil. Could this figure have been higher? Possibly. On the one hand it goes to show just how bad our squad really was.
Many of these players continued to serve the club until their contracts expired though (ala Sami, Steve Finnan and Dudek), while others were sold with only a year or so left (Riise, Sinama-Pongolle, Hamann and many more).
Since Rafa has regained all and more of his losses, this means that his transfer money has gone entirely into the current team. The players that Rafa has bought and are still with us cost 142.3 million pounds gross (Gerrard and Carra excluded, of course).
“Hang on”, I hear you cry, “that doesn’t make sense. Rafa has spent 232 mil hasn’t he?” Indeed he has, but remember where that money came from.
232.69 mil has been spent by Rafa in 5 years. This was made up of:
142.3 mil – how much our current squad cost.
34.39 mil – players who were sold at a profit.
56.00 mil – players who were sold at a loss.
Now lets look at sales:
Rafa has sold 133.91 mil during his time at the club. This is made up of:
36.33 mil – recouped from inherited squad.
72.58 mil – recouped from players sold at a profit.
25.00 mil – recouped from players sold at a loss.
These two added together put Rafa’s net spend at 98.78 million pounds.
So there we have it. Rafa’s spending put on a plate. In my humble (or not so humble) opinion, Rafa has done pretty well.
The cynics will argue that the money he spent on bit players should have been spent on the first team. However this would have put our squad value at 135.11 mil (net spend + inherited squad cost) and would have carried no insurance that the players purchased would be any good.
As an example: if Robbie Keane and Jermaine Pennant had been bought this way, then their losses would have pushed our squad value down to 121.41 mil, in order to keep the net spend the same. The only place that I think Rafa could have done better would be the money he got out of his inherited squad.
I throw the argument open now. Argue as you see fit, but I think that Rafa has done an incredible job in the transfer market. In Rafa I do not always trust, but in the transfer market I most certainly do!