Liverpool’s new senior management team of Peter Moore (CEO) and Michael Edwards (Sporting Director) have endured a torrid start to the transfer season, as the club was forced to distance itself from Southampton centre back and key transfer target, Virgil van Dijk, earlier today.
This position differed dramatically from reports 48 hours ago, suggesting that the highly rated Dutch player had chosen to continue his career at Anfield over offers from Manchester City, Chelsea and Arsenal.
However, a complaint from Southampton to the Premier League, has put paid to Liverpool’s interest and led to the Reds making a humiliating apology to the Saints.
Quite what impact this will have on the Club’s forthcoming transfer activity is to be determined, but it will affect confidence amongst expectant fans, who are gearing up for a Champions League run on the back of a solid first full season for Jurgen Klopp.
The episode will come as a bitter disappointment to new CEO, Moore, who took the reins officially earlier this week, having had a first class career in sports brand management. The long time Liverpool fan has impressed many with his clear passion for the club, but there is no question that his reputation will have been damaged through his club’s sloppy approach and hasty retreat from van Dijk. There will be disappointment too in Edwards, who has direct responsibility to execute the club’s transfer strategy.
We’re unlikely to have heard the end of this story, with Southampton set to press forward with their complaint. A distraction that Liverpool can ill afford as they build for the season ahead.