How good is Michael Edwards, ex-Liverpool director Chelsea are reportedly recruiting? Answered

How good is Michael Edwards, ex-Liverpool director Chelsea are reportedly recruiting? Answered

Michael Edwards was Liverpool's sporting director until the end of the last season, when he left his position after spending over a decade with the club.

As per ESPN, Chelsea are trying to recruit Edwards to fill in the spot left by Marina Granovskaia.

Not many Chelsea fans are aware of how good Edwards was at his job, so let's take a look at his career with Liverpool.

Brief history

Edwards started off as the head of performance and analysis at Anfield in November 2011, after joining them from Spurs. While Liverpool were suffering during those seasons, Edwards stock kept rising.

He is largely accredited to be the spearhead behind the Reds' analytical department and their use of data in transfers and within matches, something new Chelsea owner Todd Boehly uses for his Major League Baseball club LA Dodgers.

In 2015, Edwards was reportedly heavily involved in bringing Jurgen Klopp to Anfield and the two have shared a great relationship since then.

Promotion and 'Moneyball'

Edwards was promoted to the role of sporting director in 2016 and since then, Liverpool have enjoyed more success than any English club except Manchester City, despite spending a lot lesser than their rivals.

Edwards practises 'Moneyball' - which is using data and analytics to try and find hidden or low-budget gems in the transfer market. The fit with the team and the manager, history of the player, etc. is looked at in a lot of detail.

He has spent £479.6m since his promotion to sporting director. In terms of net spend (which deducts player sales from incoming transfer fees), the Reds sit at £117m - better than Chelsea, Man City, Man United, and even mid-table clubs like Everton during this period!

Best transfers and market moves

Reportedly, Edwards was the one who convinced Jurgen Klopp to sign Mohamed Salah in 2017 when the manager wanted Julian Brandt. Salah has gone on to become the Premier League's best attacker since then.

He also beat Chelsea to the signing of Alisson Becker in 2018. Edwards was scouting him for a year before the move and when Chelsea hesitated a little, he made the leap and spent a record goalkeeper fee on the Brazilian. The Blues were forced to spend another record fee on Kepa a few weeks later.

His other transfer moves include Virgil van Dijk, Sadio Mane, recruiting low-budget gems such as Andy Robertson and much more.

In fact, during his time as the sporting director, only a couple of signings out of his 20 plus transfers can be written off as 'flops', as the vast majority of them have contributed to Liverpool's continued success.

Edwards is also responsible for Liverpool raking in massive money through the sales of fringe players such as Danny Ings, Harry Wilson, and more. He added sell-on clauses to these players' deals and the Reds have benefited through that too.

His biggest sale for Liverpool also helped them finance Alisson and Van Dijk as he sold Philippe Coutinho to Barcelona for over £120m in January 2018.

He has done a splendid job with the Reds, which is non-debatable.