£110m spent last summer, £75m this coming year, transfer rumours and Liverpool are a little mad nowadays. Reports this morning suggest that Brendan Rodgers’ side are ready to open the chequebook and throw paper around willy-nilly once again to land a Serie A threesome in the shape of Roma’s Radja Nainggolan and Miralem Pjanic, as well as promising Lazio forward Keita Balde Diao for three quarters of £100m…
The trio are all very good players – valued at around £25m each – but with little experience outside of Italian football and relatively unproven records, perhaps the cash could be better spent elsewhere.
With that in mind, we at FFC Towers have found FIVE possible additions that would leave a little bit of spare change from a cool £75m…
Not exactly a blockbuster name, Milner has earned a reputation for being a somewhat safe player. The ‘Boring Milner’ Twitter account does little to help the England international’s cause, but, despite the unfortunate tag, he is certainly a very, very good Premier League performer. With stacks of games under his belt, the former Leeds prodigy – who once smashed Wayne Rooney’s record to become the English football’s youngest ever top tier scorer – is a tempting summer option for Liverpool, particularly as his Manchester City contract edges towards expiry this summer.
A free move for Milner could be used to help the Reds adapt to life after Steven Gerrard, with versatile 29-year-old’s work rate and commitment two of his standout traits.
While the usual suspects such as Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo are around the top of Europe’s scoring charts once again, a slightly less known name is also in the mix… Alexandre Lacazette. The 23-year-old Frenchman has a simply staggering 25 goals in 22 appearances across all competitions this term, with 21 of those strikers having come in Ligue 1 action – helping Lyon to the top of the table ahead of Middle Eastern-backed giants PSG.
Such figures are truly excellent and display the wealth of talent the youngster has, and for a mooted fee of around £20m – £25m, he could be worth the risk.
Xabi Alonso was a massive hit at Anfield during his spell in the red shirt, so the links with his heir have been greeted with excitement. Asier Illarramendi has only been at Real Madrid for a little over 18 months, but his days in the Spanish capital appear numbered with the young playmaker’s minutes having been rationed. An £18m raid has been mooted, which makes him a more cost-effective option than Miralem Pjanic.
Liverpool came frustratingly close to landing the Armenia international back in 2013, but 2015 could offer them a fresh shot at him. Upon leaving Shakhtar Donestk, amid the Reds links, Mkhitaryan joined Dortmund, and despite a good debut campaign, his agent has recently been talking up a move later this year with the Eastern European ‘No. 10’ looking for a new challenge.
A figure in the region of £20m could be needed for the versatile and talented player, which would leave a considerably larger amount of change than a swoop for Pjanic.
And to round off a potential five-player haul at Anfield we have Lavezzi. Although the Argentine is now 29, and will be 30 by the time the summer rolls around, his pace and intensity appear to be intact, and with his PSG future far from clear, a deal could well happen. Liverpool were linked with an £8m raid over the winter, but such a sum may be even lower in a few months’ time as his contract ticks closer to expiry. Not dissimilar to Luis Suarez in terms of playing style, Lavezzi could be a great short-term option to add depth and quality to Rodgers’ XI.