It's difficult to criticse a team for a free transfer, especially when the player in question is Burnley's Danny Ings. To capture a player who struck 11 Premier League goals last season in a team that ended up being relegated seems like a good deal. After all Ings is still only 22 and one would imagine he has the best years of his career still ahead of him.
However Ings is by no means the finished article, he is a player with a lot of potential but is he really the man the Anfield club need right now?
LAST SUMMER'S SHAMBLES
Luis Suarez's departure left a gaping hole at the club, one that Brendan Rodgers failed to fill last summer. Instead of reinvesting a large portion of Suarez's £75 million transfer fee in a world class striker he instead decided to spread the money around.
Adam Lallana, Lazar Markovic, Dejan Lovren and Alberto Moreno were brought in. All have received criticism and struggled in their first season at Anfield. The signing of Emre Can was perhaps the only saving grace for Rodgers as the young German showing an admirable willingness to play wherever he was required over the course of the campaign. The signing of Rickie Lambert seemed a strange one from the get-go.
The Englishman was 32 when he completed his dream move to Liverpool, however it quickly turned into a nightmare for him. It's bewildering why Rodgers would pay £4 million for a player only to leave him on the bench. His decision to regularly overlook Lambert in favour of playing others out of position up top shows that Lambert does not have much of a future at the club.
Divock Origi was another signing made for the future. He is regarded as a promising young talent but the fact that he was voted into the worst Ligue 1 team of the season does not bode well for the future.
NOT SO SUPER MARIO
Mario Balotelli was an arrival that immediately divided opinion. Some saw his £16 million arrival as a risk worth taking others pointed to his bad attitude at Man City and decided it was a bad bit of business. Over the course of the season the latter group have been proved right time after time. Balotelli has proved to be a catastrophic signing for Rodgers. It's not just the fact that he only managed a single goal all season, it's his appalling attitude to the game and the fact that he offers absolutely nothing to the team. The signing of Balotelli was undoubtedly a managerial mistake, any hopes that the Italian has matured were well and truly dashed.
THE MISSING LINK
Why was the Suarez money not reinvested in a world class striker? Liverpool were in a healthy position. They'd narrowly missed out on the title and were back in the Champions League. Last summer the club was in a position to bring in a world class replacement, but they didn't. The squad did not need so many new faces, they had a strong team and the one vital player they needed was someone to take over the goalscoring burden from their departing striker. Rodgers may have hoped that Sturridge would step up, but with his injury record that was always going to be a risky approach. Even if fit Sturridge is not the world class striker Liverpool need, their can be no doubting that he's a real talent but he still needs a top class frontman alongside him.
Liverpool were pursuing Alexis Sanchez last summer, this was the type of player they desperately needed. The money was there so why wasn't he a summer arrival. Liverpool were in a stronger position than Arsenal to bring in the Chilean yet it was the Emirates club that got the man. If only Rodgers had invested more money in one player than spreading it out over multiple signings then the club would surely have had a stronger season.
This summer Liverpool find themselves in a difficult position as they failed to qualify for next season's Champions League. The signing of Danny Ings is a decent start but it will be huge step up for the striker and he can not be relied upon to carry the goalscoring burden alone next season. Rodgers needs to move fast and bring in a world class striker.
They may not have Champions League football but Manchester United proved last summer that if you invest enough money you can still attract top players. Let's not forget that Liverpool is still a huge club, they may not be in Europe but the chance to play for them must surely remain attractive for a player. With the club in such desperate need for a frontman they may well have to pay over the odds but this is something they will have to live with.
They need a striker that can come in and lift the club, a proven, experienced goalscorer who the club can rely on week in week out. These types of players are out there and ultimately they all have their price. If Liverpool's owners are going to stick with Rodgers then they need to give him the necessary funds to bring in this world class frontman and trust that his judgement will be better this summer than it was last. Below are a few strikers who could potentially fill the void left by Suarez.
GONZALO HIGUAIN (NAPOLI)
The Argentinian struck 18 goals in Serie A for Napoli last season. At 27 years of age he offers the ability and the experience that Liverpool are looking for. In each of his last four seasons he's struck over 15 goals meaning he's a reliable forward. However numerous clubs have been linked to him so Liverpool will have to move fast.
CARLOS TEVEZ (JUVENTUS)
Tevez look set to leave Juventus this summer which will spark a lot of interest in him. The former City and United man is 31 now but still managed to net 20 goals in Serie A last season. He may not be a long-term option but his work rate is as good as it's ever been and his arrival would certainly lift Liverpool.
JACKSON MARTINEZ (PORTO)
The Columbian forward is attracting a lot of interest around Europe at the moment and could well be on the move this summer. The big front man could certainly inject some much needed pace and power into Liverpool's frontline. He finished last season as the Premeira Liga's top scorer with 21 goals in 30 games. A move to a better league could be attractive for him.
ALEXANDRE LACAZETTE (LYON)
The Frenchman is one of the hottest properties in Europe right now after scoring 28 goals to finish as Ligue 1's top scorer. The striker would bring some much needed pace to Liverpool's attacking play. Signing the forward would be a big coup for Liverpool as he's only 24 and can surely only get better.
PIERRE EMERICK AUBAMEYANG (BORUSSIA DORTMUND)
Like Liverpool, Dortmund endured a difficult season. However the performances of their front man Aubameyang were a plus point for the German team. He managed 16 goals playing for a Dortmund team that eventually finished seventh. A move away could be on the cards this summer and his pace means he should be able to cope with the demands of the Premier League.
Who should Liverpool sign to bolster their attack?
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