"Wherever I go, it'll be a footballing decision. I want to play in a more central position and I want a manager who has faith in me. And I'm talking about club football here."There are certainly signs for optimism in the signing of Joe Cole, which is still subject to a medical. It is nice to know that Liverpool can convince anyone to join the club at the moment, especially when Cole's known to have wanted to stay in London. Not to mention that teams actually in the Champions League were supposedly in for him.
- Joe Cole, June 27, 2010
Still, Liverpool haven't had the best record with injury-plagued free transfers now, have they?
Not only that, but while the flanks have been a preeminent concern for, say, the last six years, there are bigger holes at the moment. Joe Cole's best position is behind the striker, which is why I've included the above quote. That's also where Aquilani and Gerrard are at their best. Or he plays on the left, where Jovanovic looks likely to step in and Liverpool already have Babel and Riera (hopefully Riera's on his way out, ideally via cannon). Or on the right, where there's already Kuyt and Maxi. Yes, he's a versatile attacker who can play anywhere across the line of three in the 4-2-3-1 (which I sincerely hope Hodgson sticks with), and those frequently come in handy, but it's not a priority. Left back (two, really) and striker are priorities.
Look, at this point, I'm glad Liverpool's signed anyone. And less than a month ago, I was absolutely shouting for his inclusion in the England starting XI. Liverpool needs tricky, creative players, especially since the departure of Benayoun, and both Cole and Jovanovic ostensibly fit that brief. But there's cause for concern when we're discussing a frequently-crocked attacker on a rumored £90,000 a week. The name "Harry Kewell" rings an atonal bell.
Not to mention that even with Joe Cole, and if Liverpool sign Loïc Remy and a left back or two, as has been heavily rumored, Hicks and Gillett will still be the owners, and Purslow and Broughton will still be running day-to-day matters. £90,000 per week is a pittance compared to interest payments of £110,000 per day.
Pessimism reigns supreme this summer. It cannot be helped. Nevertheless, I'll be glad to welcome Joe Cole to Anfield. At the least, he won't be able to score winners against Liverpool anymore.