The Ornstein Challenge

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Article by Mark Mason @MMason00

Sat at a station waiting for a train. The 20 minutes at the cinema before the film starts. Waiting for the pizza to cook after a night out with your friends. With all of these things time feels like it is standing still.

However, nothing compares to waiting for a Champions League final. It is like living through two lifetimes. As such, you cling to anything to do with the reds. Any whisper of a transfer rumour is jumped upon just to satiate your hunger for Liverpool news.

Last week the BBC reporter David Ornstein made waves when he suggested that Liverpool will not splash the cash this summer. His derisory figure of £20m started heads wobbling. People cried out that to spend such a paltry sum would mean that Liverpool would be unable to challenge next year. Time will tell if Ornstein’s prediction for Liverpool’s spend is true.

However, as the positive people we are at Redmen TV. We have, rather than flipped out about this, seen it as a challenge, or at least a distraction. We call it, the Ornstein challenge.

We have put together a dream team:

  1. Goalkeeper,
  2. left back
  3. Midfielder
  4. Wide Forward

We have filled four positions, and we still have change from the £20m.We lay down the gauntlet. Can you spend £20m and beat us at the Ornstein challenge.

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GK                                           Pepe Reina                                                                 Fee:- £1m                                      AC Milan                                  Age 31

Reina is not a long term option for Liverpool. At 38 to say he is in the twilight of his career is an understatement. Liverpool don’t need a long term option. They need a bridge and Pepe Reina is the perfect option for this role. With Caoimhin Kelleher  and Kamil Grabara highly rated but with little experience, Liverpool need an elder statesman who can tide us over and allow the two talented young goalkeepers to go out and get the experience they need.

Finding an late 30s backup is not too difficult. However, finding a keeper at the end of their career who has the ball playing skills for the system Liverpool play is a far more tricky. Reina was ahead of his time in many ways and has the sweeper-keeper skills to allow our defence to maintain the high line we like to play.

Lest we forget, this is a guy who played in midfield for Liverpool in a friendly. The fact that replacing Mignolet, with a goalkeeper who fits our system better and potentially making a 14m profit from doing it, means this is a no brainer.


LB                                            Felipe Luis                                                       Fee:- free                                        Atletico Madrid            Age 32

Another bargain transfer comes in the shape of Felipe Luis. Up until recently still a central part of the Brazil national side, Luis was for many in the argument for the best left back in the world.

Not as attacking as an Andy Robertson, Luis is better defensively. He has been an integral part of an Atletico Madrid side who have maintained the best defence in Spain every season since he returned to Madrid in 2015.

With his contract running down, big clubs are starting to circle seeing him as the perfect backup to have on the bench. With Barcelona, PSG and even Wolves rumoured,  Liverpool should be looking at him as a player who once again would give our own young talent time to develop. Adam Lewis is highly rated at Melwood but lacks first team experience. A year with Felipe Luis in the side would give Lewis the chance to develop and play regularly before returning to be the long term heir to the number 3 shirt.



CM                                          Rabiot                                                  Fee:- free                     PSG                                        Age 24


The Adrian Rabiot saga has been rumbling on for the last year. With only a year left on his contract. The French club have been desperate to force Rabiot to extend his stay in Paris. The inability for a deal to be made, has resulted in the highly talented central midfielder being frozen out of the PSG side.

Rabiot has a bit of everything in his game. He can defend, he can press, he can play it simple or he can stride forward with the ball. His calming influence on midfield would work well in the more possession dominated style of football that has developed at Liverpool over the last 12 months. He would make a more adept deputy for Fabinho then we have now. Pairing them together would offer an excellent base if Klopp wished to revisit the 4231 we saw at spells around Christmas.

Rabiot is just short of being a world class player right now. However, at 23 he is still young and has a lot of room to get even better. With Jurgen Klopp training and molding his development. Liverpool could potentially snap up a future world class player midfielder for no transfer fee.



WF                                          Gareth Bale                                         Fee:- £4 million Loan                                     Real Madrid                             Age 29


Now this is cheating a little bit. However it is not far-fetched to suggest that the only way that Real Madrid are going to get Gareth Bale out of Madrid is with a loan deal. The Welshman is currently being paid a whopping €600k per week. Even Manchester United are not crazy enough to take on that kind of deal.

Therefore the only way that Real Madrid manager Zinedine Zidane may have of ridding himself of Bale is on a loan. For Liverpool to take up this option it would mean that Madrid would still have to take on the vast majority of his huge weekly wages. However if they did, Liverpool would be able to bring in an exceptional player who has lost his way.

Bale is not the player he was before his world record move to the Santiago Bernabeau. However, this is a player who averaged a goal or assist every other game in a poor campaign. In the league he was relegated to brief cameos. Yet if you look at his performances in the champions League against the best Europe has to offer, 3 goals and 2 assists in 5 appearances shows what he can do.

At worst bringing in Bale would allow for our own welsh wizard Harry Wilson to go out and play regular Premier League football, most likely for a similar loan fee. Then in a year if it hasn’t worked its back to Madrid and lots of golf for Bale.

So there we go 4 positions filled and a grand total of £5m spent. We have been able to do it ND have a spare £15m in our back pocket. However, we want to see, if you can beat us at the Ornstein challenge.

Article by Mark Mason @MMason00

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