No sooner had Manchester United heads reached the clouds following news of Angel Di Maria’s arrival at Old Trafford for a British record fee were they sent spinning back to the Earth’s depths by a 4-0 defeat to League One MK Dons in the Capital One Cup.
Fans waking up with that loss still flashing through their psyche will no doubt glance through transfer gossip columns convinced their club’s thinking has been well and truly muddled by the humiliation, as they see a reported £20m bid for Liverpool’s Joe Allen being readied.
But how should Liverpool fans feel about the news? And, more importantly, should the Reds top brass entertain their arch-rivals’ advances?
Allen arrived at Anfield as an early piece of Brendan Rodgers’ Reds rebuilding project in a £15m deal from Swansea. Since then, the Welshman has made 65 all-competition appearances for the club, scoring three goals.
Such a skinny return does a disservice to the role Allen plays in the side, which is one more focussed on possession retention than net-hitting.
However, the emergence of Jordan Henderson and defensive capabilities of Lucas Leiva mean the 24-year-old has never been more than an occasional starter for the Merseyside outfit.
Apparently impressed with an Allen performance when playing for Wales against his Holland side, Louis van Gaal’s willingness to allow Liverpool to make £5m profit on a player that rarely starts hints at the desperate situation he finds himself in at Old Trafford.
On that basis the Reds should certainly look at doing business with their enemy. They can then look to use the money, along with whatever morsels are left from the Luis Suarez bounty, to strengthen their midfield, which they’ll have to do with only Henderson, Lucas, Steven Gerrard and Emre Can remaining.
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