The January transfer window may have passed but the Premier League’s rumour mill keeps on turning.
Liverpool were linked with a plethora of prominent targets last month, many of them somewhat tentatively, but eventually finished up as just one of two Premier League clubs, along with Newcastle, that failed to make a single signing.
Resultantly however, the Anfield outfit are expected to make good on some of their reported interest in the summer, where targets tend to be available for more justifiable prices.
With that in mind, here’s a list of the FIVE January transfer sagas involving Liverpool that we’re tipping to follow into the summer window.
Could we see some of these targets arrive on Merseyside ahead of 2015/16?
Liverpool weren’t too busy in the transfer market last month but one coveted target they did try to sign was Burnley forward Danny Ings.
The Anfield outfit attempted to secure a deal that would allow the 21 year-old, who boasts nine goals and four assists in the Premier League this term, to stay on at Turf Moor for the remainder of the campaign to aid his current club’s bid of top flight survival, but Burnley quickly revealed that such a transfer would be prohibited under Premier League laws.
Some alleged Liverpool would buy the England U21 outright instead – likely for a nominal fee due to his contract expiring at the end of the season – but no bid ever materialised.
He’ll be available for free come the summer however, so Liverpool will almost certainly revive their interest then. But there’s plenty of speculation suggesting he’s also on David Moyes radar at Real Sociedad, and the freedom to offer Ings a pre-contract any time between now and May undoubtedly gives the Spanish club the upper hand
Another prodigal home-grown poached linked with the Anfield outfit last month was West Bromwich Albion’s Saido Berahino.
The England U21 has enjoyed some fantastic form this term, netting ten times in the Premier League to keep the Baggies’ heads above water, and in terms of his pace, trickery and positional versatility, would particularly suit the Reds’ fluid attacking play.
The tabloids quoted a rather outrageous £23.5million fee for the 21 year-old however, whilst Tony Pulis made it abundantly clear that he wasn’t about to part with his leading goal-scorer mid-season.
Since however, Berahino has been fairly vocal about his ambitions to join a bigger club, and if his impressive tally is maintained until the summer, the likes of Liverpool and Tottenham will undoubtedly be testing West Brom’s resolve once again.
With West Ham contract rebel Winston Reid entering the final six months of his contract, the New Zealand skipper was linked with a move to a number of bigger Premier League clubs last month – most particularly, Tottenham, Liverpool and Arsenal.
He may not be the most talented centre-back to represent the Reds, but for what the 26 year-old lacks in grace and style, he makes up for with an adept understanding of the nuts and bolts of the defensive trade, in addition to a gritty manner and awkward physicality, comparable to a modern day Martin Keown.
The tabloids claimed Liverpool were plotting a £6.5million bid for Reid towards the end of the window, following revelations from Hammers owner David Sullivan that the 6 foot 3 defender was keen to join a club playing European football.
In the end, Reid remained at Upton Park and could decide to extend his contract if the East London side qualify for the Europa League. Failing that however, he’s likely to leave West Ham on a free transfer – and although he may not exceed the quality of Martin Skrtel, Mamadou Sakho or Dejan Lovren, he’d be a solid addition to Brendan Rodgers’ squad.
Although Simon Mignolet has shown some improvement in recent weeks, Brendan Rodgers’ dwindling faith in the Liverpool No.1 has almost certainly reached breaking point. Understudied by the equally hap-hazard Brad Jones, the whole of the Reds’ goalkeeping department requires a significant uplift in quality.
One January signing that could have certainly provided it is Chelsea’s Petr Cech, arguably the greatest goalkeeper in Premier League history but unfortunate enough to find himself stuck behind one of world football’s leading goalies in Thibaut Courtois.
Clearly too good to be rotting on the bench however, the 32 year-old will likely leave Stamford Bridge in the summer. If Liverpool persist in their pursuit of Cech, they should be wary of rumoured interest from Arsenal.
Cleary out of favour at current club PSG, managing just nine starts in Ligue 1 this season, there was plenty of Premier League interest in former Newcastle star Yohan Cabaye last month.
Eventually the French playmaker snubbed interest from England to fight for his place in the Ligue 1 Champions’ starting line-up, but if he’s not granted more opportunities in the second half of the season he’ll almost certainly leave in the summer.
Liverpool were one of the clubs linked to the 29 year-old and with Steven Gerrard set to depart for the MLS at the end of the campaign, there’s logic to suggest they’ll revive their interest.
He may not quite match the quality of Liverpool’s Captain Fantastic, but Cabaye does share many important traits with him; particularly, his cultured long-range passing game, midfield industry and prolific potency from dead ball situations, amassing 15 goals and 18 assists in 92 appearances from his two-and-a-half terms on Tyneside.