It’s quite easy to become sentimental about seeing both Hamaan and Cisse leaving Liverpool, although you would be insane to argue that Liverpool have not brought in better players.
Hamaan’s comic transfer (where he went to Bolton but then got himself transfered to Man City (netting Bolton 300,000 pounds in the process)) is also a clear indicator of the difference in the quality of managers (Sam Allardyce and Stuart Pearce). More importantly for Liverpool though, this means that along with Vladimir Smicer, Rafa Benitez is slowly clearly out Houiller’s old guard and rebuilding the team from scratch.
Cisse’s departure is different, and perhaps the one area where Liverpool might have made a mistake. The loan move to Marseille, once finalised into a transfer will net Liverpool 8 million (and for a striker the quality of Cisse that is quite cheap, considering that they brought in Bellamy for 6 million, which was a steal), but you have to wonder that as a first or second choice striker Cisse is a far better option than Dirk Kuyt. Peter Crouch, despite criticism levelled towards him, is a fine centre-forward but you wonder why Benitez was not ready to use Cisse’s pace and willingness to stick it out at Liverpool despite a patchy season (which still saw him score a lot of goals). Even on the wings he is a better choice than players like Harry Kewell.
My view is that Rafa’s preference for a 4-5-1 formation means that there is no space for a traditional centre-forward like Cisse. But I’m still stumped as to why Benitez was so insistent on selling him – it’s not his injuries, because he got injured after Liverpool decided to sell him.