Ian Holloway, the Blackpool manager, is frustrated that Charlie Adam, the club captain, has handed in a transfer request at Bloomfield Road (a request that has subsequently been turned down).
But the Tangerines boss says that his midfield maestro could be the new Xabi Alonso at Anfield, if Liverpool prove that they really want the Scotland international by paying a suitable transfer fee.
“As I rate him, I think they’re mad not to buy him off us, I think he could replace Xabi Alonso, which they haven’t done yet with the greatest of respect” said Holloway.
“Raul Meireles is a great player and is starting to play like he can but they haven’t got that passer – Charlie’s their man.
“I know if I was Liverpool manager I’d have him in my team by now – I’d have bought him.
“And I’d have come up with the right amount of money because I believe in him that much.
“All you hear about the circuit is “oh I don’t know about that for my first signing, does it look good enough?”
“If the player’s good enough, then sign him – That’s what they should do. They know now that we won’t accept that offer, he’s got this year and next year so either put up or shut up, it’s as simple as that.
Holloway’s side have already rejected bids that he felt were well below the playmaker’s value from Birmingham City and Aston Villa in the current transfer window and now after rejecting a latest bid from Liverpool, Holloway is waiting for an improved bid to come back from Anfield, and has admitted that if an offer is good enough for the club, then he won’t stand in the players way.
“I expect it [Adam to want to move] because Liverpool are a massive club but until they come up with an offer that we’re accepting or would accept then there’s no story” continued Holloway.
“He [Adam] can’t dictate it, he’s got too long a contract.
“It won’t be accepted – four million quid is not acceptable to us.
“Have Liverpool come back with an improved offer? No, not at all.
“Damien Comolli rang my chairman last night, faffing about, I don’t know what… he didn’t make any sense as my chairman described to me so you either make an offer that is acceptable or you go away.”
“I wouldn’t stand in his way and I told you I wrote a list of teams down – Liverpool was one of them.
“But it’s not my club, it’s not my money.
“And if it’s not handled correctly, my chairman, he’ll dig his heels in and I’ll have an unhappy player on my hands and he won’t care.”
Furthermore, Holloway, who is keen to keep Adam as he looks to keep his side in the Premier League, says he has no qualms about the six-cap Scotland international wanting to move to a bigger club and prove himself on a bigger stage.
“He’s an ambitious land and he loves this club, you can tell that by the way he scored his goal on Saturday and he gave it a bit of that to the shirt, he’s never going to change.
“If I was him I’d want to play for Liverpool as well. I was never good enough. Played against them once I think, but they never actually wanted me.
“I think he’d play brilliantly for them but I obviously rate him higher than anyone else.”
Yet, the overriding fact for the Blackpool boss is that if Charlie Adam is to leave Bloomfield Road, then the price must be right.
“I wouldn’t sell my house to someone who wants my house but doesn’t offer me the right amount of money.”
Editor’s Comment: Well Ian Holloway is certainly using the press for his own means isn’t he.
After moaning to all and sundry, about the press and the way that transfer dealings in the Premier League are done in the public domain, Holloway has effectively now pimped out his midfield playmaker to Liverpool – he’s just not willing to do it on the cheap.
(Although remember, Holloway was very keen to tell everyone about Adam Hammill (the former Barnsley winger who has since moved to Wolves when he was bidding for the player last week.)
The way that Holloway is talking though, it seems that he is resigned to letting the player move to a bigger club, and fairplay to the Blackpool boss, he won’t stand in the players way if the transfer fee is deemed correct.
In effect, the more he talks about the players ability, the more vocal and public his support of the player, the higher the price that the club can command. Extremely clever management at the moment, as he looks to maximise the price Blackpool receive.
But should Adam stay after January, suffer a dip in form and Blackpool be relegated in May, then they won’t receive half of what they’re currently asking.
Whatever happens, it’ll be very interesting to watch the fortunes of both clubs, and of the player himself.
Can Adam pull the strings at a big club?
We’ll have to wait and see.