Stoke City might not be in the predicament they are in now had they signed Andy Robertson, as Charlie Adam urged them to do several years ago.
The left-back was at Hull City and earning rave reviews. “I said to Stoke at the time we should have bought him for £8 million – it was cheap,” revealed Adam, who is set to leave the Potters, now languishing in 14th place in the English Championship, in the coming days.
“Liverpool could afford to throw that at him though, and if it hadn’t worked it wouldn’t have been a gamble for them. What’s that £8m worth now? Put a five in front of it at least – it’s probably £60m, £70m, for a left-back.
“Fair play to him. And the biggest thing for him now will be if they can win that league – they’re in a great position.”
Thursday’s 2-1 defeat to Manchester City did not help to that end but Robertson again enhanced his reputation with an assist for Liverpool’s goal from Roberto Firmino. The Anfield club are still four points clear at the top. Having played for Liverpool and experienced the fans’ desperation to challenge for the championship again, Adam can imagine the adulation awaiting those who finally satisfy the craving of the Kop.
“If Liverpool won the league, he’d be a cult hero,” he said. “The players love him, the fans love him – Liverpool have always had a tradition of Scottish players and the one thing they always love about them is how hard they work. We have the most endeavour, we want to win, we have a passion and they’ve related to him in that way.
“But don’t forget he’s also a quality player. His assists, the link-up play he has with [Sadio] Mane is fantastic. Although it took him three or four months to get the opportunity, he hasn’t been out of the team since.”
Adam had the opposite experience at Anfield – he was pushed into the fray perhaps too rapidly. “It’s hard when you come from a team that’s been relegated,” he said. “I did it as well [from Blackpool]. When I went, Stevie [Gerrard] was injured along with a few others so my opportunity came quite quick, but they were in a transition period. If Stevie or Lucas had been fit, I’d have been in the same situation Andy was and might not have played because I came from Blackpool.
“Jurgen [Klopp] had him on the sidelines, but he did well in training, got his chance and has never looked back. He’s been the best left-back in the league, probably the best left-back in the Champions League as well. He’s proof that it’s not where you start your career that matters, it’s where you finish.
“No disrespect to Queen’s Park but Andy knows where the low point is, part-time, working on match-days at Hampden – to get to where he is now is incredible.”