After seven games in 22 days, and the accompanying barrage of related news, press conferences and analyses, the fall into the void of the October international break has seemed even more abrupt than usual. Liverpool have dispatched their internationals, while Jürgen Klopp toils away with the remaining flock at Melwood to make sure the Reds’ impressive start to the season isn’t adversely affected in the interim.
With little in the way of football to watch or react to, news outlets scramble to fill their column inches. Occasionally, they are fortunate enough to be offered a helping hand by players or their representatives doing or saying something newsworthy, or, barring that, something hilarious.
“I hope that there will be a better club than Roma – an Arsenal or Liverpool. [Everton] would be crazy for that boy, he should not go to Everton.” These were the delightfully disparaging words from Hakim Ziyech agent René van der Gijp, as he utterly unprompted and with the transfer window still months away spoke about his client’s future.
The Ajax midfielder has been linked with both Merseyside clubs in the past, and as he enters his third year at the Johan Cruijff Arena, both player and agent appear primed to move on. Whether his quality is in fact such that he should snub last year’s Champions League semi-finalists Roma and 1995 FA Cup winners Everton remains an issue of debate, however.
Exceptionally trigger-happy, Ziyech is a concoction of nutmegs, backheels and speculative long-range efforts of the sort that regularly prospers in the Eredivisie, but could easily run into trouble in the faster, more physical English game. Furthermore, the idea is exclusively being drummed up by the player’s representative, with no corroboration from journalists connected to the Anfield outfit.
As we wait for proper football to return, though, a little shot at the Toffees will do just fine.