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With Ronaldo and Torres the toast of the Premier League, what better time to run the rule over some of the overseas stars who could soon be lighting up English soccer?
Tony Cascarino, 01 Apr 2008
Liverpool and Manchester United have both laid claim over the past week to having the best attacker in the world.
While Fernando Torres is undoubtedly a class act, I’m going to have to side with Fergie on this one. Eamon Dunphy ridiculed me 18 months ago when I said it – a sure sign I was right! – but there’s nobody else in the Premiership, Seria A or La Liga who’s as good as Cristiano Ronaldo. The scary thing is that since my disagreement with Mr. Dunphy Ronaldo’s upped his game another 10 or 15% and brought the same ‘wow!’ factor to Old Trafford that George Best did.
He’s controlling and winning games to the extent that other teams are going to have to start man marking him. Give him room – like Bolton did the other week when United beat them 2-0 – and he’ll run riot. If you’re standing on his feet, the other Man U players can’t pass to him – or at least that’s the theory! If Ronaldo stays fit for the rest of the season Manchester United will win the Premiership. Simple as that.
Going back to Torres – I knew from watching him at Atletico Madrid that he was good, but over the past month or two he’s started looking like a modern day Marco Van Basten. He’s quick, good in the air, turns well and doesn’t miss many chances.
There might still be ten games to go to the end of the season, but you can rest assured that every Premiership manager has started writing his ‘Players I want to bring in during the summer’ list to hand to the chairman. Here are some of the overseas lads who come next August could be joining Torres and Ronaldo in the Premiership:
Another 21-year-old whose pace and direct running remind me a bit of Ryan Giggs. He broke through recently into the French national side, and again would suit a mid-level English club with £6 or £7 million to spare.
DERNIS (Saint Etienne)
A 21-year-old centre-forward who’s been generating a lot of hype this season in France. He’s not as big as Adabeyor, but has that same battering ram quality which unsettles defenders. Although Lyons and Monaco have both looked at him, I wouldn’t be surprised if he ends up at Manchester City or a similar level Premiership club.