Football

Liverpool continue to show naivety in the transfer market

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Liverpool finished in an unexpected second place in the Premier League last season, but with only two points between themselves and Manchester City the domestic title could have easily found its way to Merseyside for the first time in the modern era.

At the end of April on the back of a 16-game unbeaten run whereby they had won their last 11 matches, Liverpool had the title in their own hands. They were three points ahead of nearest rivals Manchester City and had only three games remaining.

But, in a game against Chelsea, their fortunes faded as captain and talisman Steven Gerrard epitomised the Red's performance with a slip that led Demba Ba to score the opening goal of a game that eventually finished 2-0.

Following this they squandered a 3-0 lead against Crystal Palace at Selhurst Park that all but sealed their fate as runners-up.

Even the most partisan of Liverpool supporters would have struggled to evisage them being in the title race, but with their strike force of Luis Suarez and Daniel Sturridge, scoring 31 and 21 league goals respectively they managed it.

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In addition to this, players such as young Raheem Sterling alongside ex Sunderland midfielder Jordan Henderson really stepped up to the plate and made Liverpool a much more dynamic and clinical side than we had seen in previous seasons.

Failure to drive-on

When a side comes that close to the title, their target for the next is to win it, but with star man Luis Suarez moving to Barcelona for £75 million and the experience of Pepe Reina and Daniel Agger also leaving Anfield for greener pastures, manager Brendan Rodgers had to make clever acquisitions in the transfer market in order to go that one step further.

And, with world class names such as Karim Benzema and Ezequiel Lavvezi  being touted as potential replacements for the Argentinian, things were looking up.

The reality however, was that a little over £116 million was spent on strengthening the side, but the names included on the list were Rickie Lambert, Emre Can, Lazar Markovic, Dejan Lovren and the ever controversial Mario Balotelli, not to mention the £25 million spent on ex-Southampton playmaker Adam Lallana.

All these players in their own right are very good, but for a team that is looking to challenge for the title, they simply aren't good enough. They are better suited to mid-table teams and those fighting for Europa league places, and with the teams around them signing players such as Diego Costa and Angel Di Maria, you can really see the difference in class.

Failure to learn

With the January transfer window now been and gone, and with Liverpool sitting in seventh position - 15 points off leaders Chelsea - and having problems scoring, they still didn't make a signing.

The Liverpool Echo have reported that Rodgers is now going to make Danny Ings, the 21-year-old Burnley striker his first summer buy. This brings with it two problems, the first of which, is what are they going to do for the remainder of this season?

Sturridge made his long awaited return from injury at the weekend, a game in which he scored, but the Reds can't rely solely on him to slingshot them into the top four, which after the precedent set last year, is the least they are expecting.

Secondly, there is no doubting Ings has great ability, as seen by his goalscoring of late, but he isn't established yet.

I feel that in order for Liverpool to make any inroads on the teams around them, whether it be this season or next, they need to invest in proven quality.

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Topics:
Football
Premier League
Liverpool

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