Brendan Rodgers didn’t have large amounts of money available when he signed on as manager in the summer but he did bring in 5 players, now I’m going to analyse them and see if they have been value for money:
Fabio Borini: Signed from AS Roma for 10.5 million, the 21 year old Italian striker scored his first goal for the club in Europa League qualifying against Gomel. He started 5 league games and made 2 sub apperances before picking up an injury which he is only now ready to recover from. The attacker hasn’t really played enough games to be judged but it won’t help his development swapping his positions from winger to centre-forward with the latter being his natural position. But can he really dislodge Luis Suarez from that role? Borini works hard, but he’s split fans so far, still best to give him more of a chance.
Joe Allen: Signed from Rodgers’ old club Swansea after a 15 million release clause was triggered in his contract. The 22 year old Welsh midfielder was a key man to Swansea last season and joined much to the dismay of some LFC supporters. But he proved how good of a player he is with an excellent performance in the 2-2 home draw with Man City. Rodgers even claimed when he signed him that he ‘Would have payed many more millions for this kid’ showing how much of a high regard he holds the midfielder. I think he joined for a lot of money and the pressure was high, he had a great start of the season but faded and games like Swansea in the Capital One Cup have made his capture questioned, if it was the right move. He’s started every league game and his passing has helped Rodgers’ playing style improve every week. Still think we haven’t seen the best of him and hopefully the return of Lucas boosts his forward play, I think it will but at the moment, 15 million seems a step too far.
Oussama Assaidi: Signed for just 3 million from Heerenveen. He had a big reputation after signing and was a shock signing. It was one which LFC got over the press’ head. He was to be the problem to our wide troubles but took a while to even get a mention in a match day squad. But when he got his chance in the Europa League, he left a good impression, one particular performance against Anzhi makes the kop faithful beg Brendan Rodgers to give him more games in the league. At the moment he is a good squad buy for 3 million but he has so much more potential if Rodgers gives him a chance.
Nuri Sahin: Arrived on loan from Real Madrid after LFC beat competition to sign the highly rated Turkish midfielder. He hit form in the 2-1 Capital One Cup win over West Brom, where he scored 2 goals and was instrumental in all attacks. That form continued into the league for the next few games and he scored in the 5-2 thrasing at Norwich. However, he seems to drift in and out of most other games and sits too deep, even when he’s needed to go forward. He often plays the simple pass and despite his attacking talents he seems content to sit back, I know Rodgers didn’t ask him too because he has made for Lucas now after his recovery. I think Sahin can play a role in this push for top 4, but needs to contribute more to be worth 10-15 million at the end of the season.
Samed Yesil: The 18 year old, Turkish born – German underage international arrived from Bayer Leverkusen for 1.3 million euros. He has an incredible scoring record for Germany u17, 18 and recently u19. He’s played in two first team games and doesn’t seem quite ready to step up but he has scored 4 goals in 3 u19 games this season. He also scored 11 goals in 9 starts for the u17 earlier in his career. He will have a bright future.
In summary, I think only time will tell on the first team players. They all have had a mixed start and maybe this current run will get the best out of them. I think Joe Allen has been the best buy but I can’t wait to see more of Oussama Assaidi and in the future Samed Yesil!
Raheem Sterling has not been made a new contract offer by Liverpool.
Sam Allardyce is keen on taking Joe Cole back to West Ham on loan.
Harry Redknapp wants Liverpool to stump up £5.5million to let Joe Cole join QPR next month.
Manchester City are keeping an eye on the Raheem Sterling contract negotiations at Liverpool.
Brendan Rodgers wants Liverpool to lead the rush in the January sales.
Owner – Max
Author – Spyros
With Enrique looking like his future at the club might be more of an attacking player. We should consider new left backs, or do we? Now I think we can all agree that Downing’s career should be over for Liverpool. Producing terrible performances at Left Wing and Left Back. So in that in mind, should we sign a new Left Back?
Before I get to that we still have many talented defenders in our squad, the main name which we all know is Jack Robinson, a terrific talent no doubt. Producing excellent performances for the Under 21s. He’s already made his premier league debut and he’s made us know he’s got a very bright future. The thing is he ready to step in as a first team player. These things are hard to predict, I doubt anyone predicted Wisdom would be a first team regular for Liverpool. I hope we can give him a couple of games instead of Downing, could produce a brilliant performance and then we could be sorted for the left back situation.
Here is the list that I think we should be interested in and which could come up with a really cheap price. These are very underrated Left Back:
1. Yuto Nagatamo
He’s playing for Inter Milan at the moment, and I really think we should aim to sign this guy. This guy is amazing. He tackles very well, he can go up the field a lot and do beautiful crosses and even score a couple of screamers. One thing which impresses me so much is his work rate, he’s like a Dirk Kuyt but faster. He goes up and down the field relentlessly. Also he can play in many positions, e.g. left back, left midfield, left winger etc. Think if we can, we defiantly have to consider him as a target.
2. Domenico Criscito
He is one of the most underrated players in the world, I rate him as one of the best Left Back’s in the world. He plays for Zenit at the moment and I am sure we could persuade him to come into English football. He missed the Uero 2012 with an injury, so he couldn’t prove himself there. I’ve seen Zenit play 2 years ago and he is one of the main reasons why they won the league, with his amazing tackles and powerful shots. He has to be a target for Liverpool.
3. Christian Ansaldi
Another brilliant left back from the Russian league playing for CSKA. One thing I have noticed when ‘scouting’ , is that Russian League players are fairly underrated and might not cost too much. This guy has blistering pace and his tackles are always precise. He’s also made a lot of interceptions for them, which could prove crucial in the Premier League. He can play at Right back also but his natural position is Left Back. His balance is very good so when sprinting up the field, he usually keeps the ball for a fairly long time.
So what do you think? Should we get a new left back, if so which one? Or shall we give Robinson a chance?
So it’s that time of year where we are linked with any player the journalists want to link us with. In this case since we are low on strikers we have been linked with every player within our budget, but that seems to run it’s core and now we are being linked with Edison Cavani. Anyway enough fairytales and on to the key point, I thought I’d have a look at the players that we are being seriously linked with:
Klass Jan Huntelaar: After a loan spell at AGOVV in the lower tier of Dutch football, Huntelaar made a 900k transfer to Heerenveen he scored an impressive 33 league goals in 46 games. In one season he even got 17 in 15 games! He was then spotted by Ajax who snapped him up for what turned out to be a bargain 9million euros. A season at Madrid and a season at Milan, his current three years at Schalke and his spell at Ajax has seen him net 168 league goals in just 8 and a little less than half a season. Last season he also scored 14 Europa League goals in 12 games and is currently on 4 Champions League goals so he’s a proven scorer wherever he plays if given enough games and is prolific in Europe too. Would cost no more than 15 million and would probably be a steal.
Theo Walcott: The pressure was always on Walcott after transferring to Arsenal for 8million as a boy and being called into the England World Cup Squad in 2006, aged just 16. He’s certainly a player with great pace and is used as a wideman but he craves he spell in the middle as a Centre-Forward. He hasn’t double figures in any prem season but that’s him as a wideman. He scored 11 in 46 in all competitions last season but was subbed 26 times. He wants to add to his goals in recent years and his finishing is very good this season but I’m not sure he would suit as a middle man. I wouldn’t mind him as a winger, but if Arsenal want to keep him they will have to give in as he could go for less than or similar to the fee they payed for him, depending on who’s interested.
Daniel Sturridge: The same age as Walcott at 23. Another player who is fairly good out wide and I wouldn’t fancy him alongside Suarez as he is very greedy and quite wasteful. Always looked destined for a great future in my eyes at Man City as a player coming through and in his 3rd season in the first team set up he netted 4 prem goals and played in 8 Europe games prompting Chelsea to make a move. Failing to impressive with 1 league goal in 26 over two seasons he was shipped out on loan to Bolton where he was very impressive with 8 goals in 11 games. His return season saw him net 11 goals. But he has only 1 in 7 league games this year. He would be a risk, especially at 15million. Chelsea would bite anyone’s hand off for that money for him. Needs another season as a proven scorer before we splash anything near that amount.
Jeffren: The 24 year old Spanish striker, born in Venezuela, has struggled to make an impact throughtout his career. He’s only managed 7 league goals in nearly 40 games over 5 season at Sporting and Barcelona. He’s also failed to net in 13 European starts and would definitely be a big risk on Brendan Rodgers’ part. Can see him failing to make an impact. He does have an impressive trophy cabinet though, 2 Champions Leagues, 3 La Liga’s among numerous others. I haven’t seen the quoted price but I think I’d personally pass.
Over to you…
Have a look where it all started and still goes on:
All the latest transfer rumours are about Walcott being linked with a move to us (Liverpool). Walcott is on some form at the minute recently scoring a hattrick against Reading in the capital one cup, also getting an assist last week vs Fulham and scoring again this weekend against spurs.
Walcott has rejected a contract offer from Arsenal, some rumours even say he has rejected another. Liverpool fan Walcott wants a striker role and 100k a week contract, paper talk say Rodgers is willing to give Walcott that chance as we are so short on strikers.
The latest rumour has been that Wenger wants £8million plus Sterling for Theo Walcott, something liverpool fans didn’t agree with – however most fans know this is complete Bull Shite.
Could Walcott fit into liverpool? Where would he play? In the striker role he wants or the winger role? I suppose the biggest question to ask is would you want Theo Walcott at Liverpool?
Ok. So there is no doubt Walcott is a class player, having four goals to his name already in the Premier League. His pace would destroy other opponents, Liverpool might need that extra pace, however we do have Assaidi. The question is, could he fit in Rodgers’s system? He doesn’t pass that much. Which could be a problem with out Tika Taka movement. However this Tika Taka movement might encourage him to pass more. His passes are fairly accurate which is a big plus of course! Walcott has been noticed when he was 17, making his England debut at 17 as well. So not everybody thinks he’s young, well, for those who don’t know he’s still young. So we can change how he plays, also this means he’s got high potential.
His wage demands, wow! If he wants over 100k, I think he’ll have more than Suarez. 100k is too much even if he would become first team. We’ve already got a problem with the wage budget because of Joe Cole.
Where would he play? That’s a good question. He’s been playing as a winger for the past 5 + years and recently he has spoken out that he wants to become a striker. His best position would be a poacher as he doesn’t really hold the ball very well. For me, I would buy him as a winger. However do we need any wingers? We’re not going to replace him with Sterling or Suso are we? We might use him as back up, but that’s one of the reasons he’s leaving, not enough playing time. Also, I personally don’t think we need a striker – I will be writing a blog soon asking the Question Should we sign a striker. But if we were going to sign a striker, they aren’t going to have enough playing time, let alone Walcott who is a natural winger. So I personally think it would be a great signing however unlikely seeing as he wants game time, and his wage demands will probably be too much for us unless we get rid of the useless Joe Cole.
– Ben (First 4 Paragraphs) and Max (Last 3 Paragraphs).
In this article I’m going to put forward my personal views on the club I love. I’m going to try and cover a wide range of topics from tactics and transfers to current personnel and some idea’s I have. Some of you may not agree with some of my opinions so I invite you to get involved and discuss your own views by leaving a comment.
So, firstly I’m going to start with the tactics, now we’ve all heard so much about the Liverpool system this season and I know a lot of people have different views on Rodgers style of play, I personally have mixed views on it. Firstly I really like the 4-3-3 system, and it does exactly what it’s meant to do in terms of ball retention but for a system that’s meant to be characterised by positional interchange I don’t really think we have enough fluidity to carry that out, in fact I actually think we’re quite rigid. Also another key part of a tiki-taka style system is the working of the ball, now by this I mean moving the ball around constantly probing the opponent looking for a weakness to exploit. I often find my self able to predict what we’re going to do, the ball is played to the full back who plays it inside to a midfielder who then passes it across the field eventually the ball finds it’s way to the opposite full back who then passes it back inside and we have the same routine of passing back and fourth un till we surrender possession. I think our lack of willingness to take a risk when in possession often leads to playing a simple pass sideways, our passing this season has been cautious to say the least. Now one thing I think makes us have to play this way is the fact that Luis Suarez is played upfront but he prefers to drop into the false 9 role which see’s him take up deeper positions on the pitch, now at this point it has to be down to the two wider advanced players to make runs through the channels and in behind the oppositions back-line, this often doesn’t happen and leaves us without a penetrating forward pass to find, we then have to revert to playing the balls across the midfield.
As you can see in the diagram, I’ve highlighted the position Suarez usually drops into now when he does this we’re left with little forward so the wide players then need to make the runs across the opponents back-line and in behind. I’ve seen Sterling make the occasional run like this and it does lead to us getting in on goal. If the players make the runs and are marked out our wing-backs/full-backs then need to advance up the pitch and fill the advanced wide areas to provide us with width, then the ball can be worked out to them and we should have men free either the wide players or the men who have filled the box.
I personally would like to see Suarez played in the deeper role instead of Gerrard, who I think gives the ball away far too often. Don’t get me wrong I love Stevie and it pains me to have to criticise him but I’ve seen him give the ball away plenty of times and then not show any desire to track back or win it back. If Suarez takes up that role he’s then playing in the area which he’s at his best and then it free’s up a slot in the starting XI for another striker who can play up top on his own, now I know we don’t currently have another striker to fill that role so I’l cover some options (realistic ones) we may look at during January later in this article. Suarez playing the deeper role and a goal scorer playing up top I feel will help our game a lot more, Suarez can cause problems in-front of the defence and try to find way through while the striker will give us a constant presence in the box and look to link up with Luis. Playing this way will also help in terms of the wide men, with the striker not having to drop deep now theres less need for them to try and make the inside runs. They can then stay wide giving us more width and with Luis causing problems and drawing defenders into the centre the wide men will get more space to cause problems.
Now another problem with the 4-3-3 has been the wing-backs/full-backs, both pushing up forward leaving us short at the back. Arsenal really took advantage of this and bypassed the holding midfielder quickly and outnumbered the two remaining defenders at the back. Personally I think we’ve been more cautious recently, I’ve noticed when one goes forward the other is holding his position to find cover. This is the solution I suggested in an earlier article about the Brendan Rodgers systems, another thing I think we should look into in the long run is replacing our full-backs with full-backs with better defensive qualities. Firstly Jose Enrique, I’l be honest I’ve not liked him at all since we first bought him. I didn’t see why everyone hyped about him at all, I find him far too casual and easy to read. He often does the same routine of running out and then waiting for an opponent to get near and try and roll them, sometimes it works but most of the time he turns plays a sloppy pass and loses possession or gets second guessed and tackled. I’d really like us to replace him but as there are other areas we need to spend money on first I’d suggest waiting and doing this in the summer. Moving on now to Glen Johnson, I love the guy going forward but find myself in mental meltdown when I see someone attacking down his side of the pitch, to say he’s suspect when defending is an under-statement. Again I’d like him replaced but would keep him and convert him to an out and out winger, I think he provides us with a lot in forward areas. He has great wing play, delivers good crosses into the box and when he cuts inside he can unleash brilliant efforts on goal. I think he has all the attributes to be a great winger and it’s something I serious think we should look at.
While we’re on the subject of retraining players to take up different positions, I’ve been really impressed with Michael Ngoo this season. I personally think he should be retrained and deployed in an attacking midfield role, he has brilliant feet for a big lad and his driving runs will carve defences open, he quite often sets his team-mates up and gets on the scoresheet himself as well. I could really see him in the Yaya Toure or Marouane Fellaini mould playing in our future midfield, his physical presence alone will cause problems.
Next up is Suso, now this isn’t really a change of position as such because he’s already played where I’m going to suggest in the past and does regularly for the Spain youth sides. I’d like to see him pushing for a starting place instead of either Gerrard or Sahin, don’t think I’m mental he will retain the ball a lot more than both. I think he will give us the creativity we so very much lack when it comes to picking forward passes, he’s so intelligent when on the ball and can easily beat a man. One of his best attributes is his passing which is almost Xabi Alonso-esque but I think he’s probably closer to an Iniesta type of player and I’m 100% certain he’s going to have a huge future. I’d just like to see him deployed in a central role more like he is for Spain rather than wide as he’s been used in our youth teams.
Moving on, as I said in the above part about identifying realistic targets we may look at in the summer. Here is a few of my personal picks of players I think we could realistically sign to improve our team, now I know most of you would like big names in there your Llorente’s and Huntelaar’s but I really don’t think we have much too offer big players anymore and I think we should look abit more realistically for players.
Ok so the first area and the most important to strengthen in January is upfront, so here’s a few players I think we should realistically take a look at.
So my first choice is Wilfried Bony, the Ivorian who we had on trial back in 2007 has come on leaps and bounds since then. He’s a very powerful, strong front-man who is very dynamic and has fabulous technique. He also does what we need very well, he scores goals. Since joining Vitesse in 2011 he has appeared 48 times scoring an incredible 32 goals.
Second choice is Wissam Ben Yedder, the French international has been in great form so far this season for Toulouse starting 11 games and scoring 7 goals and getting 1 assist. Now Ben Yedder is a more of a technical player and I think he would be ideal because I believe if needed we could use him in a wide position as well.
Next up is the man who bagged a fantastic goal against us in the Europa League, we all witnessed how good he is technically for a big striker during the game. I think he would have impressed Rodgers during the match and believe he will be a genuine target for us come January. He’s also got a great scoring record this season also starting 11 games and scoring 7 goals.
Right I’ve included Theo in the striker options for the sole reason if by a chance we could land him I personally would like to see him used as an out and out striker, I think his finishing has improved loads over the last 12 months and with his pace he would be a threat to any defence. I also think that when Suarez drops deep the space in behind the defence would be perfect for Walcott to exploit with his pace. As we saw with Thierry Henry he was a good winger but an absolutely brilliant striker, I believe Walcott could go the same way.
Ok so there’s 4 options for the striking role, I do have more but as I release a yearly article on players I think will excel in the following year I’m going to keep a few back. The 4 I’ve mentioned I personally would like 2 of them at least, and I would vary it by signing one of the big men and then of the others. If I had to choose I’d be torn between Traore and Bony but I’d probably opt for Wilfried Bony because I really like physical strikers and this boy is Drogba-esque to say the very least and I think he uses his physique more than Traore but if we ended up with Lacina I wouldn’t be unhappy at all. Then I’d couple that signing up with Theo Walcott, and as I said use him upfront occasionally but also in our wider roles. As I highlighted earlier we have a need for our wider players to make runs through the channels in behind defences and Theo would excel at that in our system.
I’d hope to see something like this fielded for our attacking line….
As you can see we could chop and change at that and get a few variations, buying those two players would give us an extra edge in attack but also make us more versatile.
Next I’d like another midfielder, I really don’t think our midfield is creative enough. Nuri Sahin hasn’t shown enough for me yet and I don’t think he’s having a good time adapting to the pace of the premiership, one thing I’m sure about is that he is a top quality player so I’m hoping he finds his feet and becomes a star but with Stevie’s decline and then having little in reserve with Henderson only able to pass a ball to a player 5 yards away I think we should look to bring another player in.
Here’s a player I would really like to see in a Liverpool shirt, surely he would improve our creativity by a great distance. Theres been some speculation that he has rejected a new contract at Ajax so maybe we would be able to prise him away but not without stern competition I think he’d attract a few big clubs attention.
Next option would be Holtby, I really like this player and think he’d also improve our creativity if we were unable to attract Eriksen. He possesses excellent control and skill with the ball and is very versatile being able to play on either flank and in the middle, he’s out of contract in the summer so we may wait until then to pursue this option if Rodgers has any interest.
Moving on I believe we’ve missed a real defensive presence in our midfield but would hold on buying a defensive midfielder until we’ve seen if Lucas can get back to his best once he’s over his injury. I’d also leave signing any full-backs although as I stated I believe we need to do so in the long run, but for now I’d save the money and stick with what we have.
Ok so next is the goalkeeping area, I’ve watched Pepe Reina decline over the last two season and I really think he has become abit of a liability. I also hate to criticise him because he has been excellent for us but when he’s costing us with bad keeping I think it’s time to bring in someone new.
Now I really think this guy has potential to be a huge talent, he’s impressed me every time I’ve watched him play even when I’ve seen him make the odd mistake. I don’t think he could come straight in as a first choice but if we purchased him soon maybe he could work under Pepe for time being and learn with the view to one day succeeding Reina. The only fear I have here is the price tag, he’s rated highly and will attract interest from many teams so I fear his price tag will be massive.
#2. Marc-Andre ter Stegen
Next up is the highly rated German keeper ter Stegen, he’s really impressed over the last year or so and is highly regarded in Germany. I think he’d make a great addition to our side and hopefully we could get a good deal.
As you can see all the players are fairly young which I think will fit in well with FSG’s plans for Liverpool, the signing of players will rely on their willingness to sanction deals. Hopefully in January after seeing the chaos their unwillingness to support Rodgers with funds for the players he wanted has caused they should back him in every way possible to strengthen our side.
Thanks for reading, please comment with your views…
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HJC Helsinki striker Joel Pohjanpalo has revealed his ongoing dream of being a Liverpool player – just a couple of months after turning down the chance to join the Anfield club.
Pohjanpalo, 18, undertook a one-week trial at Liverpool FC in March 2012 and was reportedly offered a three-year contract in August – but rejected it on the basis that the Reds could not even guarantee him reserve team football.
Choosing instead to continue his development in Finland with HJK Helsinski – who won their fourth straight domestic title on Saturday – young Joel has seemingly had a rethink, the fickle lad, and is again pondering a move to the Premier League.
He revealed in a local TV interview: “I don’t know where I’ll be playing next season, but it’s my dream to play for Liverpool FC one day.”
The young striker is under contract at Helsinki until 2015.
Explaining his decision to snub the Reds in August, Pohjanpalo said: “It was a hard decision to reject Liverpool’s contract offer. HJK is a good club and there’s a great feeling in this group; I can for example call to our assistant manager in my free time to come and play the ball. I’m sure it would not been possible in Liverpool.
“I know I might get an injury or something else and the possibility [of a move to Liverpool] may not necessarily happen again, but I have to move forward and overcome all obstacles when they arise.”
Liverpool boss Brendan Rodgers will make an extraordinary SOS call to Didier Drogba in a bid to sign the former Chelsea striker on a short-term deal, writes The People.
Drogba, 34, could be available to join a club in Europe as soon as the Chinese season ends next week. His club Shanghai Shenhua are believed to be willing to rip up his contract, making Drogba a free agent and releasing him for a move back to the Premier League, on the understanding that he is welcome back in China for their new season.
If all goes well Drogba also has an option to sign a longer-term agreement at Anfield.
Rodgers knows Drogba from his time as a Chelsea coach and is desperate for strikers, with Luis Suarez his only fit senior frontman.
Liverpool are also confident of signing unsettled Newcastle striker Demba Ba in January – but Drogba could be arriving even sooner.
Drogba’s family still live in Surrey, while there is financial uncertainty at Shenhua which means he is by no means certain to play for them again when the Chinese season starts again next March.
The player wants to maintain match sharpness ahead of representing Ivory Coast at the African Nations Cup in South Africa in January and February.
An initial two-month deal could be struck to take him to Liverpool until the New Year.
Drogba quit Chelsea in May after scoring the winning penalty in the Champions League Final shoot-out.
His £250,000-a-week deal for the second half of the current Chinese season, has also been agreed for next year’s campaign – but a break clause was inserted in that agreement.
Liverpool owner John W Henry claimed the club were not interested in expensive short-term options after the conclusion of a disastrous summer window, which saw Andy Carroll go out on loan.
But Rodgers will explain to him that Drogba would be an outstanding option for the next two months, with Fabio Borini out until the New Year with a broken foot.