Liverpool have been snubbed by a variety of high profile transfer targets over the last few seasons, leaving many with a major sense of disappointment in the club's ability to attract world class talent and, more importantly, convince that talent to make a move to Merseyside.
When the transfers didn't materialize and targets made their way to Chelsea, Arsenal, or even Tottenham, Liverpool's lack of European football was often pointed to as the culprit. But when Liverpool found their way back into Champions League this season and the transfers still didn't materialise, Liverpool fans were at a loss to explain the snub. Brendan Rodgers thinks there's a pretty clear reason why players like Alexis Sanchez ended up at Arsenal rather than Liverpool.
"They look at where they want to live, they look at all these social factors and football as well," Rodgers explained regarding some players' choice to choose the Thames over the Mersey. "That is something we can't control, that. Say if someone gets offered more money to come here rather than go elsewhere but they want to go to London, there is not much you can do about that."
Fair enough. When uprooting one's life and one's family to move to a brand new country with unfamiliar surroundings, a cosmopolitan city such as London can offer a greater opportunity for finding some of the comforts of home while simultaneously offering the widest breadth of arts, culture, and entertainment that England has to offer. What's not to love?
But London doesn't have a monopoly on expensive homes and interesting diversions. Jose Enrique has managed to eat his way through many of Liverpool's fine dining establishments without complaint, and Alex Sanchez certainly might have enjoyed the tastes of home at Valapariaso, Liverpool's Chilean restaurant, had he only given it a chance. ("Well worth a visit and you won't leave disappointed" says Cheryl L of Daresbury, UK.)
At the end of the day, these players are by and large house hunters of the international variety. Instead of stretching the value of their money by purchasing vacation homes in rural Croatia, they're bringing their millions to England's shores. Can Liverpool satisfy the needs they think can only be met by a move to London? Let's find out!
Option 1: Modern Build Near the Beach
Footballers pride often pride themselves on their contemporary tastes and many, including Mario Balotelli, have opted for homes with clean straight lines and a modern feel. This £1.85m, six bedroom home is located in the exclusive community of Formby, home to many Liverpool fooballers over the years. Featuring a pool complex, state of the art home entertainment system, and integrated double garage to house not one but two expensive sports cars, this home is made up of multiple buildings because when you're rich, why limit yourself to one home? This home is mere steps from Formby Beach, but with a half hour drive to Melwood, the location may not check all the boxes for players looking for a shorter commute.
Option 2: Historic(ish) Estate with Large Garden
For those looking for luxury a little closer to town, this four bedroom home in Woolton is a steal at £525K. Featuring pre-existing décor suiting the tastes of many footballers, this four bedroom home overlooking Ye Priory Gardens has major curb appeal and extensive grounds on which to play football with the kids. The home's indoor/outdoor integrated sound system and private patio are perfect for hosting family game night for teammates, and close proximity to the childhood homes of John Lennon and Paul McCartney lends a sense of history to the neighbourhood. A fifteen minute drive to Melwood and a six minute drive to the Tesco formerly frequented by Luis Suarez round out the amenities.
Option 3: Luxury Condo on the Waterfront
For the footballer who has yet to settle down, life in the city centre might be most appealing. Close to the city's top restaurants and nightlife, this luxury 3-bedroom condo with panoramic views of Liverpool's not-super-famous skyline lies at the heart of the city and costs a mere few weeks' wages for the average marquee signing. Within walking distance of the Tate Liverpool, Merseyside Maritime Museum, and Liverpool One shopping centre, this building features a rooftop terrace and 24-hour gym, perfect for slim recruits who may need to spend time bulking up. Secure parking for a car too fast to drive on city streets rounds out the amenities, as does a mere 15 minute commute to Melwood each morning.
London may have an endless supply of activities to do and restaurants to try, but more often than not a tired footballer is looking to relax at home with his family after playing 270 minutes in a given week. Liverpool has many of its own charms, and for what it lacks, well, London is a mere 2.5hr express train ride away. One of the perks of being an internationally famous footballer is the opportunity to live in some of the world's great cities, but making the right moves as your career progresses trumps real estate any day of the week. Sometimes you need to sacrifice the occasional night out at a Gordon Ramsay restaurant if it means furthering your career