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The rebirth of Benteke

Monday 24th October 2016
Most of you have heard of the movie, "The Curious Case of Benjamin Button" no doubt, but here I want to share with you a story of another "curious case", but this is not a story in a movie theatre, rather this story is unfolding on the football pitch. Ladies and gentleman, I bring you "the curious case of Christian Benteke".

This is a story which might not be a story for the Hollywood screens, but in the football world, it's a story that had observers interested all the same.

Belgian striker Benteke started his footballing story in England with Aston Villa when then manager Paul Lambert signed him. Many, including yours truly, hadn't heard of this "bloke".

Many foreign players have "come and gone" in the Premier League, question was, was Benteke going to be another? At his time at Villa, the answer was an emphatic no!

The former Genk man was arguably just what The Villains needed as he was able to provide the goals that Lambert's side needed. As is the way in  the football world, when a player performs well, a "big side" will naturally come calling.

That "big side" in this case was 18-time league winners, Liverpool. Managed by Brendan Rodgers at the time, the Belgian's goals which helped Aston Villa stay up at the time, persuaded Rodgers to sign the striker for an eye-watering £32.5 million.

As good as the former Genk man was for Villa, with the greatest to the Belgian, he was never worth anywhere near that kind of money. Due to no fault of his own then, Christian Benteke was naturally going to have a lot of expectation on his shoulders.

Sadly for the player, the "dream move" turned into a nightmare as remained a peripheral figure in the Liverpool side, this was in part due to Rodgers' sacking from Liverpool (the man who signed the Belgian).

As we know in came German Jurgen Klopp who at former club Borussia Dortmund, was famed for a certain way of playing, which has been dubbed "gegen pressen".

Benteke, as a good a player he is, the "high intensity" element isn't a part of his game. One would argue, "you need to sacrifice yourself for the team".

I would say yeah ok, with that logic it's like asking Ronaldinho in his prime to play as left back, I know ridiculous right? Exactly! Whoever you ask in the football community they will say the same thing, footballers want to play football and not be on the bench.

In the case of the former Aston Villa striker Benteke, then sadly for him it looked evidently clear that he was going to be spending a lot of time on the bench.

Evidently, in the case of Christian Benteke, you have a player who is very talented and possesses a lot of ability, but he needed a team that would be able to play to his "strengths".

Crystal Palace though they were that club and duly put a bid in for the player, which was duly accepted by the Anfield hierarchy. Many eyebrows were raised as to why Palace boss Alan Pardew opted to sign the Belgian for a fee in the region of £32.5 million.

On the pitch, however, it's clear to see why as Christian Benteke is starting to look somewhere near the player that was a crucial part of an Aston Villa side that arguably stayed up in recent seasons due to his goals.

The way Benteke's career is going, I guess it gives us all life lesson, don't give up on your dreams, ever. You don't get anywhere without hard work and perseverance.
Ayyaz Malik

Hi guys, I am Ayyaz. I type by day and I type by night, I type what others are thinking. I eat, drink and sleep football (I think in that order) . Watching football is part of my five a day. They say money makes the world go round, yeah right we all know it's football that makes the world go round. I am a Manchester United fan for my sins.

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