HOULLIER BEMOANS UNITED'S SPENDING POWER
By Nic Evans. Last Updated: January 1, 1970 1:00am
LIVERPOOL MANAGER Gerard Houllier has conceded that he cannot compete with Manchester United in the transfer market and lamented the state of worldwide football.
Having seen Sir Alex Ferguson splash out a stunning £50 million on Ruud van Nistelrooy, Juan Sebastian Veron and Roy Carroll, Houllier stated how difficult it would be for his squad to challenge United.
Ferguson has been given the money by United's plc to challenge for Europe in what promises to be an exciting last season in charge for the Scot.
With Arsenal and Chelsea also considerably adding to their squads, The Premiership looks set to be a battleground in the coming season.
However, it was the transfer of Luis Figo from Barcelona to Real Madrid, that Houllier points to as the one that changed the face of the world market.
Houllier said: "Prices are going crazy.
"It's difficult for us to live with Manchester United and that's the same for all other clubs in England.
"When United spend as much money on transfers as we turn over as a club in a year, then you understand what we're up against.
"Fifty million is a lot of money. In fact, it's stunning. You can build an entire stadium for that.
"Luis Figo's move to Real Madrid was the landmark. It changed everything.
"The next World Cup will define whether prices go up even further. But would I pay £20 million for a player? Yes, if it was the right player.
"I'm happy with my team at the moment. We have many young players and it fills me with pride to watch how well they are developing."