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Haaland and Núñez deals make you wonder how to catch the top two competitors | Soccer

MAnchester City and Liverpool have already finished their major business. The arrival of Erling Holland and Darwin Nunez respectively will provide the clubs with a positive pre-season, and rivals are already wondering how they can catch up.

It is important to let the player and team settle for as much time as possible. Paying deals in June means they can sort out the off-pitch details of where they live and arrange school education for their children if needed. That is a real help because it allows the player to focus on adapting to the new work environment and everything that comes with it.

Teammates will be more encouraged when they see a world-class player signing up to improve their team. If Liverpool did not change Sadio’s chances quickly, their players would be unhappy, a top performer had left, and there was no one to change their goals, assists and all-round play.

Bringing in City and Liverpool players will provoke the team and realize that individuals need to step up their game because new arrivals push them hard and challenge them. Players need a competitive environment to thrive.

When things get done quickly, it infiltrates everyone’s mood. I spoke with a player who said his team didn’t bring anyone in a season and they didn’t perform well. He signed three top players the following season and won the Premier League because new players inspire confidence and inspire people.

It puts pressure on the top six to do things with the chasing pack. Players who have seen a rival spend a considerable amount of money for the striker are asked why their teams are not doing so in clubs and when City and Liverpool combine Holland and Nunez with promising transfer rumors. It’s tough for aspiring players to see others improve when you’re stagnant. They are wondering how they can set them up when they are already back foot in mid-June.

Selling Mana was the right decision for Liverpool not because he wasn’t good enough – he was one of the best players in the final months of the season after his return from the Africa Cup of Nations – but when someone put money on the table, the final year of his contract, it was the right choice. It was obvious they wanted to leave, so it was better to respond to them than to force them to stay.

If I had to choose a manager to use the money wisely, it would be Jurgen Klopp. I don’t think any other manager would use that £ 30m wisely. It may not always be a strength for other managers but Liverpool are well-appointed and use the money nicely. Núñez has a six-year contract that gives them plenty of time to grow and they will be worth selling.

From a business standpoint, this was the right move. I am sad to see Mane go because he is amazing and Liverpool fans adore him properly but should not fear change.

Sadio Mane at Bayern Munich on Tuesday after signing for the club from Liverpool.
Sadio Mane at Bayern Munich on Tuesday after signing for the club from Liverpool. Photo: Christoph Stache / AFP / Getty Images

Nunez, who was on the team at Benfica, was not always the best support but he could hold the ball well and dribble. He caused some problems in the Champions League against Liverpool.

He was very different to Benfica and stood like a sore thumb. I always try to look not just at one player but around him: Nunez has two decent wingers but the whole team is surrounded by him. They were all about the goals and even if they couldn’t score they would catch it and link the play. I can see why Liverpool went behind him.

In the city, Pep Guardiola is always evolving; They have different styles and often change small details, which they do with Holland. The city is not going to make such an effort to sign Hollande and not play to their potential. With the wide players they have and the areas they attack down the flank, Holland is six to eight yards away from tapping them. He will get 20 goals next season because of the players around him.

There is expectation on them but City scored 93 points last season so there is not much room for improvement. They are bringing Holland to evolve while making sure their rivals can’t find a world-class striker. They know that if City decide to move to Barcelona or Real Madrid, they will be worth selling.

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There is pressure on City to make a difference in Europe but we have to manage expectations. The city’s many big-name signatures have taken time to settle. Raheem Sterling took three seasons to score two goals for the league goals, Roderi took a long time to fit into the Premier League and Jack Grealish has shown how difficult it is for Guardiola to adapt automatically. But Holland has the talent and temperament to do so.

City and Liverpool are the teams to beat on the pitch and their smart business sense and ruthlessness in the transfer market make it difficult to catch up.

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