Jamie Carragher on why bigger teams didn't come in for James Maddison
"Such players are an endangered species."
Jamie Carragher explains why even bigger teams than Tottenham Hotspur weren't in the running to sign James Maddison last summer.
The midfielder was set to leave Leicester City following their relegation from the Premier League, and after being one of the main stars in that team over the past few years, there was no shortage of suitors.
However, none of the teams that have been involved in title races over the past few seasons, such as Man City, Arsenal or Liverpool, were interested in the Englishman.
"His throwback style extends to his on-field role. With the utmost respect to Maddison and Spurs, it explains why his options during the summer did not include Manchester City, Arsenal and Liverpool", Carragher wrote in his Telegraph column.
"Maddison excels most as an out-and-out No.10. Over the last six years - or certainly since Pep Guardiola's 4-3-3 began dominating world football such players are an endangered species.
"My suspicion is that Guardiola, Klopp, Mikel Arteta and Mauricio Pochettino took a look at Maddison and were swayed more by what he does not do more than his qualities.
"In their best sides, Guardiola and Klopp expect multi-faceted attacking players or midfielders to assume the responsibility of those who once placed themselves just behind the main striker.
"Maddison is not the quickest, nor does he stand-out as someone who will trigger a high-pressing game. He does not have the natural athleticism of a No.8, and he is less effective playing as a wide attacker cutting inside."
"He shines knitting midfield and attack, deceptively quick in possession and technically superb at quickly seeing and delivering a defence-splitting pass."
Spurs play Liverpool today in the Premier League at 5.30pm.
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