Solving Liverpool’s Striking Crisis
With the news that Daniel Sturridge is out for *another* six weeks, possibly until mid-January, early February, it is absolutely imperative under-fire manager, Brendan Rodgers, signs a forward in the up-coming transfer window.
Mario Balotelli has yet to show anywhere near his potential, and even then, it is doubtful he will fit into this Liverpool set-up whilst Lille insist Divock Origi remains in France for the season.
Any potential signing doesn’t need to be a striker per se but a forward who can take a game by the scruff of the neck and conjure up some magic is vital to replace the unpredictable brilliance Luis Suarez was so renowned for. With that in mind, we take a look at some options:
Christian Benteke, Aston Villa:
Injuries have hit the big Belgian over the last 18 months or so but his qualities remain formidable. The former Genk striker is still working his way back to full match fitness after a ruptured Achilles tendon but showed signs of his old self before his recent suspension.
An exquisite first touch, the Villa striker is blessed with outrageous power and a sharp turn of pace along with a bit of magic in his boots. A tormentor of Liverpool in past league games, few defenders in world football can live with Benteke on his day and with Villa continuing to struggle under Paul Lambert, the Red Devils frontman may want out earlier than originally planned. A bid of £20m could test Randy Lerner’s resolve.
Marco Reus, Borussia Dortmund:
Some may snigger at the idea of Reus joining Liverpool but it is whispered in certain circles in his homeland that the German international is a bit of a football idealist and they don’t get much more romantic than one of English football’s most fabled clubs.
It may be a wrench to leave his boyhood club but with Dortmund badly struggling in this year’s Bundesliga, his time at the Westfalenstadion may be coming to an end. With the ability to play anywhere across the frontline, Reus would be a perfect addition to a Liverpool attack that has been blunted since the omissions of Suarez & Sturridge. A bid in the region of £30-35m would get Rodgers a seat at the table, at least.
Roberto Firmino, Hoffenheim:
In the case of being priced out of a move for Reus, a cheaper option may be Hoffenheim’s Brazilian hotshot, Roberto Firmino. The former Figueirense forward has sparkled in the Bundesliga over the last two seasons with his recent form earning him his first call up for the Selecao in which he scored a brilliant winner in the friendly against Austria.
Generally a no.10, he is quick and skilful with a killer pass and an eye for a goal and with Hoffenheim, like so many BuLi clubs, using that high tempo pressing game Liverpool utilise, Firminho would fit right into the set-up at Anfield. A bid of around £20m would tempt the German outfit into selling.
Edinson Cavani, PSG:
In the slightly more expensive bracket, there is no doubt Cavani would justify a huge outlay. The PSG frontman has struggled to wrestle the limelight away from the darling of the Parc Des Princes, Zlatan Ibrahimovic, and with the relationship between the pair contentious, a move away would suit the big Uruguayan.
The former Napoli striker is one of the most deadly strikers in world football and his ability to dominate a defence whilst leading the line would be a huge advantage for Liverpool’s trickier forwards to work their magic. At just 27, a bid of around £30-35m could tempt the opulent Paris giants into parting with Cavani.