I’ve been saying it for a very long time and it’s of my humble opinion as a Liverpool fan that we need get back to basics when it comes to scouting for players. The lower leagues and smaller clubs in Premier League are a mining ground for unpolished gems. The most recent spectacular example of this was Leicester’s signing of Jamie Vardy from Fleetwood Town. Great teams of the past were made up of acquisitions from the lower divisions and the current trend of scouting for players from abroad has curtailed the chances of British and Irish players getting into the first team of a Premier League club. This has a knock on effect particularly for the England national team.
Andy Robertson has been a fantastic find from Hull City. With an average of 85% passing accuracy in 76 appearances for Liverpool and with 18 clean sheets kept with Robertson in defence, it’s fair to say we’ve discovered a diamond of a player.
Signed by Liverpool in July 2017 for a fee believed to be £8 million, the emergence of 24 year old Robertson at left back has eased some of the defensive issues we’ve previously had. While playing for Dundee United, Robertson won the PFA Scotland Young Player of the Year award in 2014 and was also named in the PFA Scotland Team of the Year for the 2013–14 Scottish Premiership. The Scotland international has been compared to Steve Nicol.
Speaking personally to Robin about Robertson, Steve Nicol said:
“He has grown in confidence because he now feels like he belongs, when you join Liverpool part of the problem is feeling you belong, when you get over that hurdle you can then show what you have as a player”.
He made an impressive debut in a one nil victory against Crystal Palace. With his powerful running on the left wing and his crossing of balls into the six yard box, he’s a player who’ll run his heart out for the club like Dirk Kuyt used to do. An honest player who grows in stature with each game he plays and is unfazed by any occasion, most importantly he’s taken over the defensive duties in the Champions League from Alberto Moreno with great aplomb.
His contribution to the team in their 0-5 drubbing of FC Porto and his role in the dismantling of Manchester City over two legs shows he’s arrived and boy has he arrived at the right time.
A player who five years ago was playing in front of 250 fans in Scotland as Queen’s Park lost 2-0 to Annan in a League Two fixture, he quickly endeared himself to the Anfield faithful in the Premier League 4-3 victory over the then, unbeaten Manchester City last January with his pressing running against the City defence. Like a mad Yorkshire Terrier left off the leash he harried and chased each defender and he had Raheem Sterling nullified too.
Living legend and fellow Scotsman Kenny Dalglish also considers Andy Robertson to be a future Scotland captain. “There are not many Scotland players at other top clubs like Manchester City, Manchester United.
“So yes, he’d be a good choice as Scotland national team captain. If they pick him I’d have no problem with that.” said Dalglish.
Champions League glory beckons in 2018 for a player released at under-15 level by Celtic because he was considered to be too small. Moreno best get cosy for a long spell on the substitute bench because Robertson is a player who keeps defenders in his pocket along with loose change.