Although at the time of writing nothing official has been confirmed as of yet, “productive talks” have been held over Luis Suarez’s proposed transfer from Liverpool to Barcelona. The Reds’ managing director Ian Ayre is believed to have met up with Catalan officials in London yesterday to discuss the terms of the potential sale.
The Catalans are believed to be prepared to meet the forward’s release clause, in the region of £70 million, and may include Alexis Sanchez as a makeweight in the deal. Suarez racked up an incredible thirty one strikes and twelve assists in the Premier League this season and despite his many indiscretions, the departure of the Uruguayan will be a huge blow for Brendan Rodgers’ side.
However, the striker’s proposed sale would bring in more than enough money for Liverpool to sign at least one top quality replacement. Having successfully qualified for the Champions League, the Reds’ will surely attempt to replace the 27 year old with one of European football’s finest strikers.
Bearing this all in mind, here are SIX potential replacements for Suarez should he leave Liverpool this summer.
One potential replacement for Suarez at Liverpool could be his international colleague. Despite transferring to Paris Saint-Germain for an astounding £55 million just last summer, rumours continue to circulate that Cavani could be on the move once again.
The 27 year old is reportedly unhappy with his current role on the right wing for the Ligue 1 champions, with Zlatan Ibrahimovic occupying the central role.
When discussing the forward, Liverpool fans on Twitter seem divided on the idea of signing the 27 year old as a replacement.
Cavani is the biggest pretender! Even bigger than Liverpool
— Yemi (@Call_Me_Yemi) June 28, 2014
If you think Cavani is overrated you clearly don’t watch him and as it’s always Liverpool fans you compare him to Suarez..
— DareToZlatan (@TheRedMen_LFC) June 28, 2014
Despite these frustrations, Cavani still managed to bag an impressive sixteen strikes in just twenty five league starts. The 27 year old could be just the man to fill his compatriot’s sizable boots at Anfield next season.
One would naturally assume that the money generated from the Suarez sale would be lavished on a direct replacement. But with Daniel Sturridge already at the club, Liverpool could be tempted to look at Monaco’s in-demand playmaker.
Currently starring for Colombia at the World Cup, Rodriguez recorded the most assists in Ligue 1 last season. The 22 year old wouldn’t be able to match Suarez’s goals return but judging by his performances in Brazil so far, the attacking midfielder may be one of the few players out there capable of replicating the Uruguayan’s moments of match-winning brilliance.
One of the most sought after talents in world football, Rodriguez reportedly has his heart set on a move to Real Madrid. But this hasn’t stopped some Liverpool fans on Twitter from dreaming…
Monaco want €90m for James Rodriguez? Liverpool value Suarez around £80m? I’m sure we can come to some kind of agreement here, people.
— Simon (@PhantomGoal) July 2, 2014
I can seriously see James Rodriguez in Liverpool.
— M.Faez Tarabichi (@MFaezT) July 3, 2014
Despite racking up seventeen goals in La Liga this season, the anticipated arrival of Radamel Falcao at Real Madrid will likely reduce Benzema to a bit-part role at the Bernabeu. Already superseded by Gareth Bale and Cristiano Ronaldo, the 26 year old is at risk of being lost in the club’s infamous “Galatico” culture.
With no contact extension as of yet being agreed, the opportunity is there for Liverpool to make their move. The prospect of becoming the main man at Anfield next season could be a very tempting proposition, but Rodgers may have to battle Arsenal for the 26 year old’s signature.
Why not replace one controversial striker with another?
— Daniella Matar (@DaniellaMatar) July 3, 2014
I’m in a minority, but I won’t be deterred in my conviction that Balotelli would be good for Liverpool
— John M O’Sullivan (@JohnOSullivan91) July 3, 2014
Balotelli enjoyed a somewhat mixed spell at Manchester City but has flourished since returning to Italy. The 23 year old netted fourteen times in Serie A for AC Milan this season and has been strongly linked with a move to Arsenal over the last month.
Several newspaper reports today have suggested that Rodgers has already identified the Italian as a potential replacement to Suarez. The response from Liverpool fans may be mixed but in strictly footballing terms, Balotelli would certainly deliver goals at Anfield next season.
Liverpool have already benefited from signing one of Chelsea’s outcast strikers, why not another?
Have this weird feeling that if Suarez goes to Barcelona, we’re gonna sell Lukaku to Liverpool…
— Kadeem (@KadeemDaDream) July 2, 2014
Id be happy with lukaku great player and if he xan score that many for Everton he can score much more for liverpool
— TaylorLFC (@Taylor_LFC8) July 3, 2014
Lukaku may not have had enjoyed the best World Cup so far but the Belgian still remains one of European football’s most promising forwards. The 21 year old has netted thirty two league strikes in successive loan spells at West Brom and Everton but is still not expected to form a part of Jose Mourinho’s plans next season.
With the arrival of Diego Costa at Stamford Bridge, Lukaku will likely look to move to secure first team football this summer. The signing of the Belgian would represent a smart piece of business by Liverpool, even if he did turn out for their rivals last season.
Lukaku’s international colleague, talks are already believed to be underway between Liverpool and Lille over the nineteen year old. Origi recently netted the winner against Russia and recorded five strikes in Ligue 1 this season.
For a reported £10 million, the signing of the Belgian would certainly be one for the future. But as Origi has demonstrated for his country this summer, the forward already possesses the ability and confidence to trouble Premier League defences next season. The nineteen year old isn’t ready to step in to Suarez’s shoes but would undoubtedly be an exciting attacking prospect to add to Liverpool’s ranks.