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Anfield Banter: Ricardo Quaresma, Shunsuke Nakamura, Craig Bellamy, Peter Crouch, Robbie Fowler, Harry Kewell, Peter Beardsley, & Steve McManaman

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* Apparently a bid for FC Porto's wonder winger Ricardo Quaresma was rejected, but it was insinuated that a slight raise of the offer might be accepted. The initial offer was for £13.5m and it is believed that a bid of £15m would be sufficient. If you've never seen Quaresma play, you're missing out on one of the most talented young football players in the world. He tends to score some amazing benders of the outside of his foot. Hopefully signing Torres will sway players like Quaresma to come on board.

* Gordon Strachan is adamant about keeping Nakamura in a Celtic kit. I think he's quite erroneous in comparing the Henry situation to Nakamura's though. First off, Shunsuke is only 10 months younger than Henry. If the Japanese midfielder was 24, than I would concur, but he's not. Also, if he wants to test the waters in a more competitive league, he's going to have to do it now, before he gets too old. TH14 has nothing to lose or gain by going to La Liga, Nakamura doesn't have that luxury. So to put it in my perspective, in order of potential left winger we could acquire, it would go like this:
1. Quaresma - Young, talented, fun to watch, great player and honestly only a great season away from being at the 'World Class' level. He's that good.
2. Mort Gamst Pedersen - EPL experience, reliable, good player, not sure if Blackburn would sell him though
3. Shunsuke Nakamura - The SPL and Celtic are about as close to EPL style as a team and league can get, so I think he would adapt easily and quickly
4. Yossi Benayoun - Like Nakamura & Quaresma, he's very versatile and can play anywhere in the midfield. Also his EPL experience is a definite plus, not to mention he's also not half bad and will be the least expensive fee
5. Florent Malouda - prefers Chelsea, which means we don't want him
6. Simao Sabrosa - experienced, good, though lack of EPL experience and his age scares me a little
7. Mancini - He's tough enough, good enough, tends to disappear here and there, but overall, is a solid player, not sure if he's a realistic acquisition

* West Ham looks to be the front runners in the Craig Bellamy sweepstakes, while Rafa has told Peter Crouch that he will not be sold, but will have to fight for a spot. Personally, I'd rather keep Bellamy, but it probably won't matter with Torres and Voronin coming on I don't see either Bells nor Crouchy being higher than fourth on the depth chart.

* Cardiff City is going after Robbie Fowler with a 'unique' pay package that would make him the highest paid player at the club. I don't really see God playing in Wales for a Championship side that could have easily been relegated last season, but I guess if the shoe fits.

* King Harry is vowing to give his all next season if Rafa keeps him around. Harry, Harry, Harry, let's just see that you make it through the summer without injury.

* Finally, two former players made headlines recently. Peter Beardsley, one of the most beloved players ever, helped open a new all-weather pitch at Full Sutton Prison near York. I don't get it. A ceremony to open an all-weather pitch at a prison? Are you kidding me? In brighter news, Stevie Mac will be joining Birmingham in an advisory role. Expect the players to have better hair next year.