Victor Valdes has been heavily linked to Liverpool since the close of the transfer window. He is a goalkeeper who carries great respect. His destination since he declared that he would leave Barcelona last year has been unknown. But after a recent ACL injury, that cut short his swan song at Barça, clubs willing to take a chance on him diminished. Many clubs have been linked with the La Liga winning keeper but Liverpool are the most resent.
So why do we need Valdes when we have a young international goalkeeper of our own? Where Mignolet is a great shot stopper and can at times pull off miraculous saves, we all know too well that he is inconsistent from set pieces. Mignolet needs some competition for the No. 1 position and that completion isn't coming from Brad Jones. It's fair to say that Mignolet has never had completion since he has been at Liverpool. With Reina being shipped out to Napoli for a years loan and then being sold to Bayern this summer. Mignolet has never had the experience of a veteran goalkeeper to help himself progress. This is why we have seen a stall in Mignolets abilities, and why he hasn't advanced as much as Liverpool or Brendan Rodgers had hoped. Valdes is a proven goalkeeper at the highest level. Something Liverpool need. A strong shot stopper with the ability to control his box. Although he was blessed with a pair of world class, World Cup winning, centre backs in Puyol and Pique I still believe he had a lot to do with the success he enjoyed at Barça.
It has also been pointed out by former players, such as Gary Neville, that Mignolet is lacking some goalkeeping fundamentals. Fundamentals that are obviously not being picked up by the coaching staff. This is clear because Gary Neville can take us back to last year and show everyone Mignolet is still making the same mistakes. Bringing in a veteran such as Valdes will surely only add to the knowledge of the coaching staff and leave Mignolet in a more educated position than he was before. This would happen whether Valdes starts or not. In my opinion if you want to challenge for the title this year, Valdes must start and start soon.
If Valdes ever does get the dressing room at Anfield he will find our must successful player Steven Gerrard. Gerrard can boast FA cup, League cup, UEFA Cup, Super Cup and Champions League medals. Moreno could boast about his recent triumph with Sevilla in the Europa League. Manquillo could tell tales about the way Atletico Madrid went about securing La Liga last year. But after that finding players that have won and won repeatedly on the highest stage would be few and far between. Valdes himself as been a part of teams that have triumphed in the World Cup, world club cup, champions league, Copa del Rey and most importantly he has won league titles. 6 to be exact with Barça in La Liga. He knows what it takes to go from August to May in a competitive league and both win and be narrowly beaten. He also knows how to move out of that shadow of a close call and build on it. Something that so far in this season looks severely lacking.
What Valdes would bring to Liverpool, wouldn't be his medals to be passed around and looked at, he would bring a winning attitude. An expectation to win now and to keep being successful. He can do this by either being between the sticks or on the bench and the training pitch. He could be the key that would lift this squad from the all mosts to the champions. That all derives from his mind set of winning, not winning sporadically like Gerrard, but by winning time after time season after season like Valdes.
Who knew a 32 year old former Barça goalkeeper with a dodgy knee could be the biggest signing of the year for Liverpool?