Football

Are Liverpool's days of attracting top players over?

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Liverpool have been busy this transfer window, with the recruitment of Roberto Firmino, James Milner and Christian Benteke sticking out as the most important and potentially promising of the Merseyside club’s acquisitions.

However, there are rumblings around the club that these transfers aren't quite of the calibre that a team battling for the Champions League spots should be making.

Last season Rodgers’ recruitment policy was a disaster. Of Markovic, Lambert, Lallana, Can, Lovren, Moreno and Balotelli, who could seriously call themselves a regular starter?

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Markovic has had a disappointing start to life at Anfield, Lambert was a stab in the dark that hasn't paid off, Lovren has clearly not taken the pressure of a larger club and has found himself regularly second choice.

Nothing needs to be said for Balotelli, who has been reportedly training away from the rest of the squad and Liverpool are actively looking for a new club for him. It has been almost arrogant of Brendan Rodgers to think he could be the man to turn the Italian around.

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Of all the signings, only Lallana, Can and Moreno can honestly look back on their first season with some degree of satisfaction. And again, this is only some degree of satisfaction, neither Moreno or Lallana can point to a consistent season.

It appears Rodgers has done a Tottenham. He has tried to replace Elvis with the Beatles, and instead has ended up with 5ive. But it wasn’t just a case of getting unlucky with his signings.

His recruitment policy has been all wrong. Could you honestly say before they joined that Balotelli or Lambert looked like Liverpool players? Did Markovic really look like a winger who could compliment Sterling or Sturridge?

These weren't punts taken on players who could possibly make it. Rodgers viewed these players as ready made first team signings, with £25 million for Lallana, £20 million for Markovic and £20 million on Lovren. £65 million on players who are not certified starters for the team.

What next?

Rodgers has been given the benefit of the doubt by the Liverpool board, and has bought again, buoyed by the £49 million sale of Raheem Sterling, and there has been a shift in the recruitment policy.

Whilst there are still risks in the form of the £29 million spent on Roberto Firmino, he is an international player with a growing reputation from his days in Hoffenheim. There have been Premier League proven signings in the form of James Milner and Christian Benteke.

However, the question marks still remain. Again, another unproven talent has joined Liverpool, for a very big fee, especially put into perspective when you look at other transfers from the top four. Petr Cech: £10 million. Bastian Schweinsteiger: around £10-15 million.

These are truly world class stars, players who have been there and done it, won everything there is and can offer a calm head when it really matters.

With the squad Liverpool have, the recent departures of Steven Gerrard and Luis Suarez, you feel that this Liverpool team is crying out for experienced leaders, players who have won the big trophies, the Champions League, the World Cups, The Euros, even the Copa Americas.

It begs the question, why are these players not interested in a move to Liverpool. The Champions League is an oligarchy, a vicious power circle that is truly hard to reach.

Players crave playing in the elite European competition, and after the World Cup, it is the pinnacle of every player’s career, to win the Champions League.

Liverpool need to break into the Champions League to attract the top tier of world class stars again. Until then, they will remain paying over the odds for players who aren't quite there yet.

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Topics:
Liverpool
Premier League
Football

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