— Liverpool FC(@LFC) January 11, 2013
Under happier circumstances, if we had an agreed upon means to quickly evaluate a player’s effectiveness beyond the entirely subjective and speculative claim that “Rodgers, you know, played him too deep, out of position,” then this post would be a detailed summary of what went wrong with Sahin at Liverpool, how it was a reflection of what went wrong at Real Madrid, and how a move to Dortmund will be a transformation for the Turkish midfielder.
Instead, this post is going to be about the unreliability of player’s Wikipedia pages.
Not the facts, because who cares about those. I’m speaking here of the language. Here for example is Sahin’s paragraph on Sahin’s time at Real Madrid:
On 9 May 2011, after weeks of speculation, Şahin announced his departure from Dortmund in a press room at Signal Iduna Park. He signed a six-year contract with Real Madrid of La Liga. He stated the main reason to join Real Madrid was because of José Mourinho and the chance of playing for a club as prestigious as Real Madrid. He made his official debut as a substitute in a 7–1 thrashing of CA Osasuna at the Santiago Bernabéu on 6 November 2011, as he had been sidelined by injury problems since August earlier that year. On 20 December 2011, he scored his first goal for Real Madrid as they thrashed SD Ponferradina 5–1 in the Copa del Rey. On 27 March 2012, he was named in the starting XI to face APOEL in the UEFA Champions League quarter-final, where his performance was praised by Mourinho and various newspapers.
Beyond the fact it’s poorly-written (how many times does one need to use “thrash” as a verb for “beat handily”?), it’s clearly astroturfed. Mourinho praised him for a nice performance! Along with ‘various newspapers’! Sign him up!
The Liverpool section is no better, avoiding mention of any prolonged absence and merely detailing the specific instances when he scored some neat goals. And Sahin’s profile is pretty much the norm for most players, which makes me want a return to the kind of vandalism that once graced John Utaka’s Wiki page—including the fact he promoted a line of varnish’s called Utaka’s Lacquers—for weeks before anyone noticed.
But again, players can do this when there is no agreed upon, empirical means to demonstrate that a player is shit beyond redemption, or not a fit at a particular club at least. I’ve already layed out the means to help fix this, which you can read about here.