Liverpool should have moved for Inter Milan forward Mauro Icardi in the summer, when Brendan Rodgers had the chance.
The Italian forward has hit the ground running this campaign, finding the net six times in four appearances, despite Walter Mazzarri’s side slumping to consecutive defeats against Fiorentina and Cagliari.
And with summer signing Mario Balotelli failing to shine since his move from AC Milan, Icardi is showing the same form that prompted Rodgers to seriously consider him as a replacement for now-Barcelona forward Luis Suarez.
Despite the earlier stages of his career being dogged by rumours of personal misdemeanours, Icardi has now forged himself a reputation as one of the most prolific marksmen in Italy’s top flight.
The 21-year-old scored nine times in 23 appearances last term after moving from Sampdoria, helping Mazzarri’s side qualify for the Europa League in the process and establishing himself as a Serie A star.
Dani Osvaldo ended his Premier League nightmare by signing on loan from Southampton, but despite the arrival of the former Roma star Icardi remains the side’s main man. He will be looking to boost his hopes of the golden boot when Napoli visit the San Siro on Sunday evening, with David Moyes waiting in the wings if the club’s hierarchy decide to axe Mazzarri.
Life after Suarez was always going to be difficult over on Merseyside, but with Liverpool uncomfortably looking up at Chelsea, Manchester City, Manchester United and Tottenham their need for a striker over a similar calibre is overwhelming.
Balotelli was drafted in but after a promising debut against Spurs is still waiting on a first goal back in the Premier League. AC Milan have excelled without the maverick in their ranks, and could be destined for great things under Fillipo Inzaghi if Chelsea loanee Fernando Torres finds his form soon.
Icardi’s potential strike partner Fabio Borini has similarly struggled, and could move to the San Siro when the transfer window reopens in the New Year if Mazzarri remains in the managerial hotseat.
Whether or not Davd Moyes takes the reins in the near future, Icardi has done enough to show he could become Inter’s best striker since the days Diego Milito ruled the roost.
The Argentine’s departure in the summer after four years on Milan soil has helped his former team-mate flourish, but the Italian giants may face a struggle to keep him at the club if he continues to shine.
There will be no shortage of suitors, but they may only allow him to depart if they receive a bid that proves far too difficult to refuse.