After yet another busy period of intense summer spending at Anfield, Liverpool once again face the rest of their upcoming league campaign with an unmistakable cloud of uncertainty hanging over many of the club’s most expensive stars.
As most of the Red’s high profile new additions in the modern era have so far failed to justify their hefty price-tags in recent seasons, Brendan Rodgers’ entire transfer policy has seemingly been called into question. Although a strong portion of the 2015/16 campaign admittedly remains to be played from Liverpool’s point of view, some sections of the Anfield faithful are already growing tired of their current manager and his apparent lack of prowess in the transfer market.
So then, in light of the recent speculation and unease surrounding Brendan Rodgers and his latest batch of new signings, here are six potential targets Liverpool should look to land this January in order to help them out this season…
Whilst the young, up and coming Portuguese talent may admittedly be causing a stir among many top-flight English clubs this season, Sporting Lisbon’s William Carvalho would nonetheless represent a decent capture for Liverpool – should they ultimately win the race for his signature in January.
The 23-year-old Angolan-born star really knows how to dominate his respective matches, often proving a standout figure for his side in the middle of the park. Through a combination of strong passing ability and resolute no-nonsense tackling, Carvalho is an option that could well excite the Anfield faithful should he eventually join up with the Premier League in 2016.
As Liverpool certainly won’t be the only keen outfit in the hunt for the Portuguese favourite this winter however, Reds fans shouldn’t be getting too excited over the prospect of their club signing William Carvalho just yet…
As up and coming Bundesliga talents usually prove in the modern era, Hakan Calhanoglu is yet another name to have made a rather impressive contribution within the German league in recent seasons.
The Turkish attacking midfielder has succeeded in impressive style both for Hamburger SV, and more recently for Bayer Leverkusen – so he would in-fact propose a truly smart move for Liverpool should they manage to arrange a deal for the technically gifted 21-year-old this January. Alongside Philippe Coutinho for the Reds, Calhanoglu could well arrive as the perfect candidate to help restore some pride in and around Anfield this season.
Nonetheless, whilst the player himself may already hold a pretty decent reputation – especially when it comes to scoring free-kicks and long-range goals with unexplainable ease – Liverpool must remember that they’ve already signed one former Bundesliga star this season in the form of Roberto Firmino. As the Brazilian is yet to show his true worth in the Premier League however, maybe Rodgers must therefore remain wary in regards to signing Calhanoglu as well.
FC Barcelona’s 24-year-old centre-back – Marc Bartra – may yet to have fully established himself as a first team regular at the Nou Camp in recent seasons, but that doesn’t mean the Spanish defender couldn’t possibly make a name for himself in the Premier League should he see fit to move to England this January.
Making a solid impression with the La Liga giants can never be considered an easy task of course, yet Bartra may well have found himself a route out of Spain this season in light of Liverpool’s reported interest. It doesn’t take a great deal of footballing knowledge to realise that the Reds need a little more help in the centre-back department after all, especially as the once £20 million rated, Dejan Lovren, has so far failed to consistently do the business whilst operating in Liverpool colours.
As transfer rumours go, this particular one could easily take place for the Reds in January. However, maybe Brendan Rodgers should perhaps move for a bit more experienced defensive reliability than Marc Bartra can currently guarantee at this stage in his career.
Although he may have admittedly appeared to drop off the boil recently – thanks to the emerge of several other high profile Belgian internationals – Dries Mertens nonetheless still represents a player with clear potential to make in the Premier League.
Liverpool could therefore improve their fortunes greatly by signing the current Napoli star this January, regardless of the other options currently on offer to Brendan Rodgers at Anfield. Mertens is a direct player who loves to work the flanks. He can certainly score goals when required, yet this particular winger is seemingly tasked with providing assists for his teammates more than anything else.
As many of Liverpool’s other key transfer targets may ultimately remain somewhat unlikely to take place for the Reds in the cold light of day, Brendan Rodgers surely wouldn’t go far wrong in landing the widely experienced 28-year-old wide-man this January. Mertens would also potentially highlight much better value for money than what Liverpool have already seen fit to splash out on in recent seasons, with all things considered.
Another, albeit lesser known, winger to make an appearance on the particular list arrives in the form of Birmingham City’s up and coming youngster, Demarai Gray. As Liverpool have spent quite frankly a ridiculous amount in recent seasons on untested players, this St. Andrew’s favourite could well represent a decently priced asset at Anfield for once.
Although the 19-year-old remains a relatively untested player in all honesty, the Reds may benefit from signing Gray simply for his re-sale value alone. Whilst it still remains incredibly early days at this stage in his career, if the winger continues his so far decent form in Birmingham colours, a whole host of interested Premier League clubs could potentially come in for his services sooner rather than later.
However, as Liverpool require strong results – and even better performances – across the remainder of the 2015/16 Premier League campaign, perhaps now is the wrong time for Brendan Rodgers to make a move for Demarai Gray. It takes a lot of hard work to make that step up to the Premier League in some cases after all, especially at a club as prestigious as Liverpool.
Whilst Liverpool’s interest in the current PSG attacker, and Argentina international, may well have cooled off now that the summer transfer window has eventually come to a close, Ezequiel Lavezzi nonetheless symbolizes one of the most underrated talents currently operating in the modern game.
Granted, the former Napoli man hasn’t quite hit the lofty heights many initially expected of him when he first joined up with Paris Saint-Germain in the summer of 2012, but why should that mean Lavezzi still doesn’t have something to give in these latter stages of his career? One way or another, Liverpool could well have made one of their best deals in recent seasons if they eventually manage to sign the 30-year-old, and subsequently get the best out of the fiery South American front-man at Anfield.
Out of all the potential transfer targets possibly cropping up on Brendan Rodgers’ short-list this season, Ezequiel Lavezzi arguably represents the most promising of them all. If he one day rediscovers his best form among the English top-flight, then the entire the Premier League would simply be better off because of it.