Michael Edwards explained how Liverpool decide on a transfer this week. The Sporting Director of 10 years steps down next year.
Michael Edwards is leaving Liverpool. He directed the club’s transfers for 10 years now but 2022 will see his era come to an end.
That, understandably, brings some worry. Edwards’ spell in charge has led to Liverpool bringing in some of the world’s best payers. He’s helped build one of the greatest teams in the world and the Reds’ most successful for decades.
But how has he done that and what is the process? Edwards explained in an open letter to fans on Liverpoolfc.com.
Edwards on the Liverpool transfer plan
“Contrary to popular belief, we don’t sign players off “stats” but the information provided from their research does play a crucial role in our decision-making,” wrote Edwards.
“Whether it is video, written reports, data, background checks or good old-fashioned scouting from the stand, it all goes into the big decision-making melting pot.
“And when you make a decision, all this information allows you to do is mitigate the risk you are taking.”
That last line is key, then, and it goes some way to explaining why Liverpool can be quiet in the transfer window. They look at signings as a risk and gather information to lessen that risk.
Can they prove he’s the right fit stylistically? Is he a hard worker? Does he have the right personality?
Edwards’ team sets about answering as many questions as possible to put Liverpool in a position to push the signing through. If they can’t take away enough risk, the transfer doesn’t happen.
It relies on this team getting everything right. In fairness, they usually do and the vast majority of signings over the last few years have been brilliant.
Without this risk-averse approach, we wouldn’t be saying that. There would be far more signings, as you see at other clubs, most of which wouldn’t have ticked certain boxes.
Combine that with a certain frugality at the club and it’s easy to see why we get quiet windows.
But that’s the Liverpool way right now and it’ll continue post-Edwards. It’s brought the club to where they are now – we’ll trust them to get it right going forward, too. Even if it can be frustrating.