The Arms (Errr, Legs) Race: 2022 Summer Transfer Window

SocrManiac

Tommy Seebach’s mustache
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Apr 15, 2006
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Neymar is a Ronaldinho-style street baller that couldn’t make the full leap to dominate the game. He has incredible foot skill, a decent touch, and not much else. I think with the right coaching and less of the life off the pitch he would have had the tools to be among the elite. Maybe if he had escaped to Spain earlier?
 

67YAZ

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And remember they paid him €20m on the side to be spokesperson for Qatar 2022 when he transferred plus hired his dad as some kind of “consultant.” I’m sure the true sum total of Neymar at PSG is mind boggling.
 

rguilmar

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Jul 16, 2005
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Neymar is a Ronaldinho-style street baller that couldn’t make the full leap to dominate the game. He has incredible foot skill, a decent touch, and not much else. I think with the right coaching and less of the life off the pitch he would have had the tools to be among the elite. Maybe if he had escaped to Spain earlier?
Man, where to start with this post? First off, what do you mean by street baller? There are a lot of negative connotations with that phrase. The vast majority of the soccer playing world plays on the street, and some variety (if I’m reading your condescending post correctly) of a one-on-one game is appreciated. Hell, there is no team that wouldn’t want a winger who gets by their opponent as easily and consistently as Neymar. We likely agree that he had great yet unfulfilled potential, but that potential stems from his ability to humiliate defenders. Neymar was “off the street” and playing academy soccer at Santos when he was eleven, an academy that produced players such as Coutinho. So I honestly don’t get the “street baller” thing.

Second, what is a “Ronaldinho-style” player “that couldn’t make the full leap to dominate the game.” Ronaldinho is a World Cup Winner, a FIFA Player of the Year, and a Balon d’Or winner. He got a standing ovation at the Bernabéu as a Barcelona player. Who wouldn’t want to be a Ronaldinho-type player?

Third, what is the “right coaching”? His managers include Luis Enrique, Unai Emery, Thomas Tuchel, and Mauricio Pochettino. Seems like a strong and diverse set of soccer minds to me.

Finally, what does being in Spain have anything to do with it? He was forced to play second fiddle in Barcelona, likely a cause for him leaving, and in the eyes of Barcelona fan is just another player in the Messi era. This seems like a humbling experience that young players can learn from. Is there something special in the water of the Premier League that helps with whatever is ailing Neymar (or would you like to recount the failed stars and general douchebags to come out of that league)? Has there been any improvement since he moved to Paris in your eyes, because he seems like a worse player now to me? Neymar’s issues seem to stem more from personal shortcomings and the people who he surrounds himself with, not where he plays.

Neymar is not without his faults, and I agree with your general point (I think) that he is a player who could have achieved more. But that’s true of the majority of players in the world. I do take issue with how you said it. I could be reading you wrong, and if so, I do apologize
 

SocrManiac

Tommy Seebach’s mustache
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Apr 15, 2006
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Yeah, you’re reading me wrong.

Street ballers, as far as I’ve seen, are some of the most talented and gifted players with the ball at their feet. One on one they can take on pros and embarrass them. The ball is a natural extension of their bodies. They aren’t built to play on a team and can’t make the leap to play on a traditional professional side.

Ronaldinho was a street baller that DID make the leap. He has that otherworldly skill that embarrassed the best in the world, but he also knew (or learned) how to be part of a side, could play a role, and could win a game by himself. He also smiled all the time and his love of the game was absolutely infectious. He could embarrass an opponent and they’d clap hands with him and share a smile afterward. When Neymar puts a guy on the floor there’s venom in it and he gets his legs chopped at the next attempt as a result.

Messi was forced to move to Spain early due to his size. He grew up In a disciplined football culture. Had Neymar made a similar move at a young age, he may not have embraced the lifestyle side to the extent that he did and been able to focus on development. The culture in Brazil rightfully celebrated what was developing in its midst. It is an awful lot for a young man to handle and process. The right coaching at the right time may have instilled the discipline in him. Instead, he acts at times like the game is a distraction for his off-pitch activities.

He didn’t completely blow his gift, depending on how you measure success. He’s certainly well paid. I think he had the raw talent to put himself in the next pantheon and have his name in with the Ronaldos, Messi, Maradona, and the inevitable Pele arguments. I don’t think he got the guidance, mentorship, and coaching at the right times in his career to take advantage of it.
 

Zomp

Dope
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Aug 28, 2006
13,526
The Slums of Shaolin
There was a period where Neymar could lay claim to being the best player in the world not named Ronaldo or Messi. Truthfully I haven’t seen much of him at PSG but he’s much more of a success story then not.

I think maniac’s post fit more with someone like Robinho than Neymar.
 

swiftaw

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Every time I Neymar play he spends half the time rolling around on the floor.
 

Morgan's Magic Snowplow

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There was a period where Neymar could lay claim to being the best player in the world not named Ronaldo or Messi. Truthfully I haven’t seen much of him at PSG but he’s much more of a success story then not.

I think maniac’s post fit more with someone like Robinho than Neymar.
I agree.

Neymar was a massive player at Barcelona. The decision to go to PSG derailed his career but he wasn’t just a talented young “street bsller” at Barca, he was an elite player with everything you could possibly want, including not just amazing skills and athleticism but really good football IQ and ability to combine with teammates.

He never really reached his potential but that seems to be more about injuries and attitude combined with a very bad move, not limitations in his game.
 

teddykgb

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He still is super good. He didn’t quite make it to Messi and Ronaldo in their prime level but his stats are still really good and he works way harder than people give him credit for.

His biggest problems are that he has that weird “mysterious injury” around his sisters birthday annually and lots of real injuries as well. When he’s available he’s still incredible and imo gets painted with the traditional negative traits of Brazilian flair players which are not always accurate.
 

67YAZ

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Neymar has reached his potential, and that was as a top-5 player in the world during his prime. But it just didn’t reach the level hype/marketing/celebrity that Neymar cultivated…so lots of fans resent him for that. They can’t see the player behind the image, just the distances between the player and the image.
 

Kliq

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He also shared his prime (which for him was his age 22 to 25 seasons) with two guys who were just re-writing the record book and wildly ahead of their contemporaries. In a non-Messi, non-Ronaldo world, he probably has a run as the "best player in the world" or at least has a better claim to that title than not ever really being in the conversation. You could make a case where Neymar was just as good as Ronaldinho, who avoided Messi/Ronaldo's prime when he was regarded as the best player in the world.
 

Zomp

Dope
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Aug 28, 2006
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Yeah to be honest I’m not too bothered because we have to rebuild again anyway. Him coming back was great to see but it hasn’t worked out. Was worth the punt though.
 

OCST

Sunny von Bulow
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Jan 10, 2004
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Better off without him for the long term, especially if they can get anything for him(????)
 

67YAZ

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How many attacking mids does ManU need? All of them, apparently. Bummer for Brentford, though.

In other transfer news, City make the swoop for…Palermo, the club. This makes a perfect dozen under their umbrella. So long as they don’t fuck with Palermo’s pink unis, this should good for the club. They went bankrupt in 2019 and were busted down to Serie D. They just earned promotion to Serie B.
 

67YAZ

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Sancho, Rashford, Donny VdB, Elanga, Bruno..Martial is still on the roster…
 

67YAZ

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Ah we may be arguing semantics. Martial, Rashford, Sancho and Elanga are all wide forwards. VDB, we’ll see.

Eriksen is a good depth move
Im giving you a bit of shit. I suspect Eriksen is a good depth signing now but will be a bang on starter down the back half of the season. He’s a perfect fit for ETH’s approach.
 

67YAZ

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Asked mg Dutch pal about ManU’s new LB Malacia. Reports that Malacia is blazing fast, will immediately give opponents something to worry about with his ability to get from box to box in a blur. But probably not physically strong enough for the EPL yet and not as consistent with his technique to be a full time starter.

Presumably ETH knows exactly what he’s getting and has plans for Malacia’s development. But that means Telles has to go first?
 

EP Sox Fan

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Asked mg Dutch pal about ManU’s new LB Malacia. Reports that Malacia is blazing fast, will immediately give opponents something to worry about with his ability to get from box to box in a blur. But probably not physically strong enough for the EPL yet and not as consistent with his technique to be a full time starter.

Presumably ETH knows exactly what he’s getting and has plans for Malacia’s development. But that means Telles has to go first?
Telles is absolute garbage and should never see the field in a United kit again. He's going to be Shaw's backup and eventual replacement.
 

67YAZ

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Leeds also snip Sinisterra from Feynoord. What a great name for cartoon movie villain bent on trashing the environment.

Sinisterra absolutely ripped up the Eredivise this year with 23 goals and 14 assists in 49 matches. Played on the left with a preferred right foot, loved skinning defenders and driving in on goal. When Raphinha goes, it will be interesting to see if Marsch tries Sinisterra on the right.
 

Morgan's Magic Snowplow

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Leeds seem to be playing a bad hand pretty well from what I can see.

But being a team that almost got relegated and then losing by far your best two players is a bad hand. If Marsch can keep them up next year while they stabilize and rebuild, he'll have done very well.
 

67YAZ

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Like what Leeds are doing.
A couple weeks ago I was talking shit about Leeds talent level, and now look at them. That’s six young or prime aged players, three who have history with the manager. But all from outside the EPL - can Marsch get them bedded in quickly?
 

teddykgb

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My generic opinion is that they’re a bunch of interesting individual players but the downside to buying a bunch of lottery tickets is that some of them lose. The jump for Sinisterra and Aaronson is huge. Maybe less so for Adams but that’s a tough position and still likely a big jump in quality. Rica basically hasn’t played for 2 years. There’s a version of this that goes really right for them but also a version where they all take time to settle or just aren’t at the level and they’ve got some fairly expensive mistakes to shift while they go down.

I try not to fall into the trap of Premier league exceptionalism but in their shoes I’d probably have preferred a few premier league proven players whose level you can approximate to mix in with the lottery tickets like Sinisterra.
 

Jimy Hendrix

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The problem for a Leeds though is that PL players are wildly overpriced if any good.

So they can get exciting talented players and they can get proven PL players, but ones who are both is a stretch. Roca comes with his own question marks for sure, but I’d take him over Danny Drinkwater, which I think is the “proven PL players” bucket they’d likely be shopping in.
 

OCST

Sunny von Bulow
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My generic opinion is that they’re a bunch of interesting individual players but the downside to buying a bunch of lottery tickets is that some of them lose. The jump for Sinisterra and Aaronson is huge. Maybe less so for Adams but that’s a tough position and still likely a big jump in quality. Rica basically hasn’t played for 2 years. There’s a version of this that goes really right for them but also a version where they all take time to settle or just aren’t at the level and they’ve got some fairly expensive mistakes to shift while they go down.

I try not to fall into the trap of Premier league exceptionalism but in their shoes I’d probably have preferred a few premier league proven players whose level you can approximate to mix in with the lottery tickets like Sinisterra.
That's right, which I think is a good thing. Every acquisition has risk. With established players it's that you pay too much for someone on the wrong side of the age curve, or with limited resale value. For young players, it's that they won't amount to much. I think this crop of players is at the right intersection of price and potential and you're almost expecting that one or more won't pan out - but one or more will.

I'd be much happier seeing my club do this than what Villa is doing, for example. Even if Coutinho lights the world on fire they've severely limited their ability to do other things and he will have no sell-on value. If he's not that good then they've done all that and made the on-field product much worse. That way lies the destruction of the club. See also, e.g., Everton FC, 2017-19.
 

Mighty Joe Young

The North remembers
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Sep 14, 2002
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There’s lots of rumours that Bernardo Silva wants to leave as well … specifically to Barcelona. Supposedly City want £100m for him which seems kind of ridiculous. (Which may be the point)

Thinking that would be a much greater loss than Stirling?
 

swiftaw

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Silva would definitely be a greater loss than Sterling, but no way Barca can stump up 100mil.
 

Zososoxfan

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Jul 30, 2009
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Silva would definitely be a greater loss than Sterling, but no way Barca can stump up 100mil.
TBH, we're having trouble stumping up $10M.

Sterling to Chelsea makes no sense to me. They have wingers coming out of their ears, but are almost assuredly losing Rudiger, Azpi, and Christensen. Who's starting next to Silva? Is it finally time for MIAZGA?!?? It's obviously not. I actually really liked what I saw from Sarr in the limited times I saw him, but even I can admit he's the equivalent of a "toolsy player" and I have no idea if he's actually up to EPL-UCL starting XI standards. Chalobah is another CB I see on their squad. Am I missing anything??? Of course Chelsea will have some of the strongest players in the world at every other position--James, Alonso, Mount, Mendy, and Haavertz are beyond doubt, and then there's Kovacic, Werner, Puli, Kante (!), Ziyech (not for long most likely), CHO, and other very capable players. Moreover, I still think Tuchel is in the elite echelon of managers and he will get more out of this group regardless. Weird business nonetheless unless they ALSO still get Kounde, in which case I'll punch myself in the dick because he would be such a good pickup for the Blues and put them right back to last year's horribad...3rd place finish.
 

Mighty Joe Young

The North remembers
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TBH, we're having trouble stumping up $10M.

Sterling to Chelsea makes no sense to me. They have wingers coming out of their ears, but are almost assuredly losing Rudiger, Azpi, and Christensen. Who's starting next to Silva? Is it finally time for MIAZGA?!?? It's obviously not. I actually really liked what I saw from Sarr in the limited times I saw him, but even I can admit he's the equivalent of a "toolsy player" and I have no idea if he's actually up to EPL-UCL starting XI standards. Chalobah is another CB I see on their squad. Am I missing anything??? Of course Chelsea will have some of the strongest players in the world at every other position--James, Alonso, Mount, Mendy, and Haavertz are beyond doubt, and then there's Kovacic, Werner, Puli, Kante (!), Ziyech (not for long most likely), CHO, and other very capable players. Moreover, I still think Tuchel is in the elite echelon of managers and he will get more out of this group regardless. Weird business nonetheless unless they ALSO still get Kounde, in which case I'll punch myself in the dick because he would be such a good pickup for the Blues and put them right back to last year's horribad...3rd place finish.
Supposedly Raphinha has snubbed the Chelsea transfer and , it’s claimed is now headed for Barca for £65m ????

How can Barcelona swing yet another big bucks transfer?
 

HowBoutDemSox

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Aug 12, 2009
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Supposedly Raphinha has snubbed the Chelsea transfer and , it’s claimed is now headed for Barca for £65m ????

How can Barcelona swing yet another big bucks transfer?
This was a good rundown of Barca’s financial situation: https://www.espn.com/soccer/barcelona-espbarcelona/story/4697467/barcelona-financesexplained-can-the-club-really-sign-players-while-chasing-more-stars-this-summer

Basically they can either raise enough money (e.g. selling of future TV money for upfront cash now) or reduce expenses (e.g., offloading high wage players) to become net neutral under La Liga’s financial rules, which would require roughly €700 million in new revenue/reduced costs, in which case they’re back to normal FFP rules, or under La Liga’s special COVID rule they can spend 25% of new money even if they don’t get back to a neutral balance.

The first TV rights deal was worth about €207.5 million, they’re hoping to sell more of their TV rights for another €400 million, and they’re hoping to sell merchandising rights for another €300 million (unclear if they’ll get that) and reduce wages by another €160 million, which could potentially clear them to register their new signings. How that shakes out, we’ll see, and selling all that future revenue for upfront payments will also stretch them thinner going forward.
 

Zososoxfan

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Damn it, looks like Chelsea is doing some smart business in addition to their silly stuff, and Koulibaly is expected to join from Napoli. He's 31 years old, but for the next season or 2 he and Silva should be fine. However, with 2 old CBs paired next to each other, Chelsea may leave themselves exposed when pressing high. Even if a faster defender is paired with them in a 3ATB, it's highly unlikely that the younger defender will be the CCB, thus any speed will be negated by not being able to cover in behind both LCB and RCB. Nevertheless, this is a big improvement on their current squad.
 

67YAZ

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Damn it, looks like Chelsea is doing some smart business in addition to their silly stuff, and Koulibaly is expected to join from Napoli. He's 31 years old, but for the next season or 2 he and Silva should be fine. However, with 2 old CBs paired next to each other, Chelsea may leave themselves exposed when pressing high. Even if a faster defender is paired with them in a 3ATB, it's highly unlikely that the younger defender will be the CCB, thus any speed will be negated by not being able to cover in behind both LCB and RCB. Nevertheless, this is a big improvement on their current squad.
And it would pair Koulibaly with his national team keeper, Mendy. That has to make everyone in Senegal excited.

Edit: while this rumor seems to have some legs, I also think a lot of agents are making hay out “naive American billionaire wants to over pay for my player!” leaks to the press.
 
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