The Press have focused most of their attention when it comes to Liverpool’s transfer policy this summer on their need for a decent winger – but there’s another role within the squad that desperately needs to be assessed and dealt with come the season’s close. One of the top priorities for Liverpool this summer must be to find somebody who can fill in for Steven Gerrard when he’s injured and provide increased competition in the centre of Liverpool’s midfield. The fact remains, when Steven Gerrard is out injured Liverpool often suffer – how can they fix this issue?
I’d like to present two realistic potential targets for Liverpool this summer. Though neither are really players in the Gerrard-mould, I would argue that both have the quality to fill in when necessary.
The first player is Blackpool star Charlie Adam. The second is Alberto Aquilani, who Liverpool currently have on loan at Juventus. The question is: Should Liverpool bring in someone new – someone with a growing reputation, or give another shot to a player who impressed when he originally arrived at the club?
Let’s start with Aquilani. When he joined Liverpool in 2009 and played alongside the defensive-minded Lucas, he was able to exercise a great deal of freedom and get forward as he wished, which resulted in a number of impressive performances. He’s got brilliant vision and can pick-out a pass, he would add some offensive threat to Liverpool’s midfield and he’s extremely versatile. He works extremely hard and has the talent and ability to turn this hard works into results.
Charlie Adam is another player who could probably fill in well at Liverpool. He’s had a remarkable season at Blackpool and has shot to prominence as a result of his confident, assured performances against all manner of opposition. He’s got a great goal-scoring record, can put in a tackle and knows how to pass. He may not yet be the complete player, yet you can’t help but feel that he’s well on his way.
Indeed, it strikes me that Adam is for Blackpool what Gerrard is for Liverpool. So who should Liverpool go for? An old favourite or a newcomer making a name for himself?
In this case, I hope Kenny Dalglish plays it safe. Liverpool fans already know that Aquilani will play well for them. Adam, on the other hand, will be a gamble – and his price will be massively inflated following his breakthrough season. Adam is also a little too prone to picking up cards – he has had 32 yellows and 1 red in his last 107 games and he can’t match Aquilani’s technical proficiency, something that will become important in European matches.
It’s known that Liverpool tried to sign Adam and it’s likely they will try again. It’s also clear that Aquilani has mixed feelings about making a return to England. It’s my hope that Liverpool avoid any future bids for Adam and focus on enticing Aquilani back to Anfield.
Read more of Harry’s articles at the excellent This Is Futbol