Five reasons this transfer target could be the answer to Liverpool’s problems

Gone are the days of swashbuckling attacks at Liverpool, with ‘SAS’, for a combination of reasons, having not been on the field for Brendan Rodgers this term. Life without Luis Suarez and Daniel Sturridge has since been tough for the Reds, and with the goals having dried up – their tally of 29 is the lowest in the Premier League’s top eight – speculation that a striker is on the club’s agenda this month has increased week on week.

The Metro are reporting that £8m Paris Saint-Germain man Ezequiel Lavezzi is now the main target, with a swoop before the January deadline closes firmly on the agenda. But could the Argentine be the answer? We think so, and here are FIVE reasons why…

Better than Rodgers’ current options

Lavezzi stats

With a combined two goals from his quartet of strikers, Brendan Rodgers clearly needs more options up top. Okay, Daniel Sturridge has been out injured and Fabio Borini has featured infrequently, but even with these anomalies removed, the strike rate is abysmal. Lavezzi has often been slammed for his wayward finishing in the past, yet the Argentine has more goals than any Liverpool forward, and boasts superior accuracy rate with his shots.

But, Lavezzi, as the stats show, is about so much more than goals, with ‘The Gunslinger’ outperforming every Reds hit-man in terms of passing. The PSG ace creates more chances, plays the ball forward more often and finds his team-mates with greater precision. Alongside Daniel Sturridge, he could be a useful tool.

Cost-effective

Lavezzi

The £8m fee being mooted is tempting to say the least for Rodgers. Liverpool’s owners, Fenway Sports Group, are known to prefer younger players with greater ‘growth potential’ in terms of value, but even at 29, Lavezzi offers ‘bang for buck’. The ex-Napoli man possesses bags of experience from his spells in Italy and France and has long been hailed as one of PSG’s key men in their era of lavish, Middle Eastern-backed spending. No mean feat. Mario Balotelli cost double the fee, yet Lavezzi could be double the player…

Versatile

Lavezzi 2

Able to play on either flank, positions he’s frequented with PSG this season, or as a central striker, both deep lying and more conventional, Lavezzi boasts great versatility. Rodgers is known for his love of flexibility on the pitch, and the Argentine’s ability to function in pretty much any role ‘up top’ would surely be of benefit in the Reds’ current 3-4-3 set-up. The 29-year-old could easily slot in for Sturridge, challenge the likes of Sterling and Coutinho for a deeper role or even work alongside another forward if the Northern Irishman reverts to the diamond formation used at the back end of last season.

Not dissimilar to Luis Suarez

Wipe away those tears Reds fans, as Lavezzi could be the ‘new Suarez’. Okay, he’s not at the same level as the Uruguayan, yet their playing styles are alike – just look at their nicknames: ‘The Gunslinger’ and ‘El Pistolero’… The South American links may ease comparisons in a lazy way, but the two possess similar traits and characteristics in terms of their approach and attitude on the pitch. For a start, both Lavezzi and Suarez never stop running, which was a trait Anfield fans loved about their departed star, while their willingness to take on defenders with bustling play rather than fancy tricks is remarkably alike. Much like Suarez in his early Liverpool days, Lavezzi has been slated for a lack of a clinical edge in front of goal, yet we all saw how the former Merseyside number seven sorted that out…

A character

Football nowadays is a little devoid of ‘characters’. Players are so aware of their public image and wary of backlashes that ordinary responses and mannerisms are commonplace… but Lavezzi is a little different. For a start at the World Cup over the summer he squirted his manager with water, while there have been numerous stories about the forward enjoying life off the pitch. This would be an issue if he weren’t performing, but two titles in two years at PSG and hero status at Napoli illustrate that he can mix fun and function.