Whitbread? What's the word...

Discussion in 'Liverpool' started by jri, Dec 1, 2004.

  1. jri

    jri Red Card

    Sep 28, 2000
    boca
    (Matt.....c'mon.....how 'bout allowing a little discussion about the smelly kid? :)

    Seriously, nice job by the kid tonight. OK, I only listened to BBC, but in my book I don't need to see a game in which a non-starter goes to ANY Premiership club's home in a Cup (even Carling final)....and the defense only allows one goal over 120- Whitbread musta done a decent job tonight. Keane, DeFoe got big minutes on pitch- one goal is nothing really all things considered...

    So for those of you who have seen him play more (in person, TV), what's the word? His contract is up summer 2005 I believe...where do think he goes from here?

    I'm thinking either a stronger commitment from Liverpool (as backup in center-on bench for 2005-2006 season with some rotation in) or he tries a move to lower Premiership side......Can't see him duplicating the current scenario (not good for career)...


    BTW- I have seen him play on TV and for US youth.....I can see him being (good chance) a solid, but fairly average starter in the Premiership somewhere soon, however not at Liverpool or top 4....likely lower table for a few years until he proves he's got something more (than we seen until now)...

    He gotta be as good as Zac Knight... :rolleyes:
     
  2. Matt Clark

    Matt Clark Member

    Dec 19, 1999
    Liverpool
    Club:
    Liverpool FC
    He's OK. He did well away at Millwall, less so at home to Boro and was not massively comfortable last night. He was the player who lost his marker for the goal. And he appeared to lack the pace to recover, hence cut-back and Defoe nicks it in from six yards out. To be honest, none of the defenders will put yesterday's match in their career portfolio - but Dudek most certainly will. Of the four, Henchoz was Henchoz (slow but clever) and yound David Raven probably did the most to impress, simply by virtue of it being his first chance to do so. But Whitbread did OK.

    With regard to his future, who knows? We need another centre-back and Benitez has proven beyond doubt that he is not shy of playing the kids and giving them their chance. But that doesn't mean our third of four will be Whitbread next year. We will be buying someone in. What Whitbread's future is depends on who that is. It might be a top-class player, in which case Hyypia will drop to the bench as third of four. It might be that we actually buy the "third of four" player (like, for instance, Michael Dawson at Forest) in which case Whitbread is fourth of four.

    He will be offered a two-year extension sometime in the spring, I should imagine - and then it's up to him to see what he can do.
     
  3. jri

    jri Red Card

    Sep 28, 2000
    boca
    Thanks for that.

    From watching him play, its seems clear that Whitbread will always be at a speed disadvantage against the DeFoe types. That means he needs to learn- from his time on the pitch- about positioning, angles, anticipation, etc. to make up for lack of footspeed.

    Not impossible, in fact there are several examples of good centerbacks who were a bit slow of foot, but make up for it. However, the game just gets faster and faster (so I think it gets harder and harder to cover up a lack of athleticism)..

    I'm thinking he'll probably be better off taking more time w/lesser club, but we'll see...
     
  4. Russian Scouser

    Russian Scouser Red Card

    Nov 17, 2004
    that Lundun
     
  5. Suss

    Suss Member+

    Aug 11, 2003
    New York
    Club:
    Liverpool FC
    Matt, do you think Carragher has moved ahead of Hyppia as our first choice center half? And if Rafa was to sign someone, you think it is Hyppia who would lose his spot in the starting lineup?

    Carragher has probably been our most consistent player this season, and I don't see why he can't be a long term starter as our first or second choice center half.
     
  6. Matt Clark

    Matt Clark Member

    Dec 19, 1999
    Liverpool
    Club:
    Liverpool FC

    I do think that, yes. Not on quality as much as on the fact that Benitez, like Houllier before him, clearly values a "Scouse heart" in the team. Carragher is one of those players that always seem most likely to get the chop whenever a major change in personnel or management are afoot but he always manages to re-assert himself. This is because he is

    a) a bloody good defender, arguably the most underrated playing in England at the moment,

    b) consistent like a swiss timepiece and

    c) totally, utterly, irrevocably devoted to the cause. Always.

    What manager wouldn't pick such a player?

    So, with regard to Hyypia, I think we recognise two things:

    1) The centre-back situation, taken as a whole, is that we all recognise the need for a new one.

    2) Given the above considerations about Carragher, which player is most likely to give way to any new arrival*?

    *Assuming that the new arrival is a top-class defender of established renown, rather than a bench buddy for the likes of Whitbread.
     
  7. SuperElf

    SuperElf Member

    Jul 16, 1999
    Dallas, TX
    Club:
    FC Dallas
    Nat'l Team:
    United States
    Also, I think we have to appreciate that RB isn't just worried about this year, he's worried about the long term. What's Sami now, 32? He's probably only got a couple top notch seasons left in him. Jamie is 5 or 6 years younger, and should take this season and next to establish himself as THE crucial player in the backline (if not the club as a whole, which would be the case if SG left . . .)
     
  8. Matt Clark

    Matt Clark Member

    Dec 19, 1999
    Liverpool
    Club:
    Liverpool FC
    Hyypia just turned 31 a couple of weeks ago, so it's not quite that bad in terms of his longevity. He's a centre-back, after all. There's no reason he can't continue to play at this level for another four or even five years. Having said that, his achilles heel is and always has been pace (which, just by the by, is why Whitbread is not the answer if it's Hyypia we're looking to replace). So we will probably buy pace for the backline, but not at the ultimate and final expense of Hyypia. I think there is still plenty for him to do for us because in terms of experience and vision, he's one of the best centre-backs in Europe and has proven to be exactly that for years now.

    Carra is 27 next month. Entering what is generally considered to be the prime of a player's career (between 27 and 29). He has, as you say, got more or less everything in place to make himself the key defensive figure at LFC for the absolute minimum of the next five years. The mad thing is, we're saying this about a player who's already got 325 first-team games under his belt.

    In years to come, people will look back on Carra in the same way as we now look back upon people like Yeats, Huges, Smith and Neal.
     
  9. liverbird

    liverbird BigSoccer Supporter

    Sep 29, 2000
    Mars
    Club:
    DC United
    Nat'l Team:
    United States
    My thoughts exactly. He could easily end up with 500-600 first team appearances for LFC. And this for a lad who started in the youth teams.
     
  10. johno

    johno Member+

    Jul 15, 2003
    in the wind
    Club:
    Manchester United FC
    Nat'l Team:
    --other--
    so I'm thinking Silvestre for Gerrard - straight up :D he has pace!

    lol... j/k - but would you guys look at a Silvestre if he were available, or a Wes Brown? I hardly think so, but I will say that I've been very impressed w/ Pool's latest acquisations...
     

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