COMING IN MAY: JK's book - 'Suarez vs. Evra: The Untold Story'.

01 May 2016

Transfer Update: Liverpool 'want to sign' top-class £37m international; Klopp sent scouts today

Liverpool boss Jurgen Klopp has reportedly sent scouts to watch highly-rated Valencia defender Shkodran Mustafi.

The Liverpool Echo claims that Mustafi is on Klopp's transfer hit-list for the upcoming transfer window, and according SuperDeporte journalist Dani Moreno;

“Liverpool will come this Sunday [today] to watch Mustafi in action. They will negotiate because they want to sign him”.

Some info about Mustafi:

* 24-year old central defender, who can also play as a right back. Current contract expires: 2019.

* 78 apps for Valencia (9 goals/assists). 10 apps for the German national team.

* Jun 2014: Linked with a move to Jurgen Klopp's Borussia Dortmund side.

* Has a £37m buyout clause in his contract.

* Aug 2014: Nicolas Otamendi's assessment: “Mustafi is an excellent centre-back and that’s why he went, played and won the World Cup. Valencia have signed a great centre-back with a bright future and a wealth of experience.”

If Jurgen Klopp tried to sign Mustafi at Dortmund, then Liverpool's interest makes sense, but £37m? No chance, though if Mustafi leaves, he'll almost certainly go for much less than that.

Possible partner for Joel Matip?

Author: Jaimie K

Get Off His Back: Owen defends 'brilliant' £30m Liverpool star after Swansea controversy

Reds legend Michael Owen has defended beleaguered Liverpool striker Daniel Sturridge after he allegedly failed to acknowledge Liverpool fans at the Liberty Stadium this afternoon.

A clearly disappointed Sturridge^ trudged off the field and straight down the end of Liverpool's 3-1 defeat to Swansea City, and he is now receiving abuse from Twitter trolls for his alleged 'attitude' problem'.

In his post-match press conference, Reds boss Jurgen Klopp refused to censure 'brilliant' Sturridge, and when asked about the incident on BT Sport^, Owen dismissed the faux outrage:

"There were eight [Liverpool] players in the centre circle [after the game] so there were already two down the tunnel. There’s no point getting carried away with just Sturridge".

Exactly. Two Liverpool players had already left the field ahead of Sturridge, but, as usual, he is the one getting it in the neck.

I personally couldn't care less if Sturridge failed to clap Liverpool fans. Why should he acknowledge 'fans' who continually perpetuate spurious myths about his attitude and alleged arrogance?

Sturridge was clearly consumed by disappointment at the defeat (and his part in failing to turn things around), and anyone who's played the game will understand how that feeling of frustration can become overwhelming.

Additionally, Klopp's questionable man-management arguably contributed to Sturridge's reaction, and after being constantly snubbed for the club's biggest games, his unhappiness is palpable.

In my view, this overblown incident is a total non-issue, and overly-entitled Liverpool fans who are butt-hurt over Sturridge's alleged snub need to get over it already. Injuries aside, Sturridge has been superb for the club, yet he's still constantly criticised and slandered by sections of the fanbase.

Sturridge owes these ingrates nothing.

^ Sturridge: £30m-rated

Author: Jaimie K

Contact Made: Liverpool in transfer 'negotiations' with exciting €18m attacker who 'idolises Ronaldo'

In January, The Telegraph claimed that Liverpool were 'keen to sign' Ajax attacker Anwar El Ghazi, and new reports this weekend suggest that Jurgen Klopp is intent on signing the 20-year old this summer.

According to Italian newspaper Tutto Sport:

* Liverpool are interested in signing El Ghazi, who wants to leave Holland to play in a more competitive league.

* Ajax are open to offers of around €15m-€18m.

ESPN journalist David Amoyal further claims:

"El Ghazi has told his agent that he would rather a move to the Premier League, and negotiations with Liverpool have recently started".

Some info about El Ghazi:

* 6'2 right-winger, who can also play as a striker. Current contract expires: 2019

* Ajax: 33 goals/assists in 78 games (One every 161 mins). 4 goals in 12 games various Holland youth teams.

* This season: 14 goals/assists in 36 games (One every 175 mins)

* 2015: Ajax 'Talent of the Year'.

* Ronaldo de Boer's assessment: "He [El Ghazi] idolises Cristiano Ronaldo and is trying to copy him. He is similar in height and style".

* De Boer on El Ghazi's weakness: "Anwar likes to emulate Ronaldo, but instead of imitating tricks, he should focus on his body. He is too weak in the legs".

* Jaap Stam's view: "He [El Ghazi] has the talent and skills to become a good player, but he needs to concentrate on his work and keep the level up."

Henderson aside, there are no tall, attacking players at Anfield. Liverpool need to mix it up a bit, and a tall player with the attributes of El Ghazi (or Yarmolenko, another 6'2 attacker) should be a priority (IMO).

Author: Jaimie K

30 April 2016

Anfield Exit: £75k-a-week Liverpool star threatens to quit; confirms contact with 'several clubs'

In January, Liverpool defender Jose Enrique reportedly held talks with Newcastle United, but ultimately rejected a transfer to stay and 'fight' for his place at Anfield. Since then, Enrique has been totally ignored by Klopp, and he's now made clear his frustration with being marginalised by the manager.

At the time of Newcastle's interest, Reds legend Jan Molby slammed Enrique for taking such a 'ridiculous' stance:

"I find it amazing [Enrique] wants to stay. He barely played last season and now he’s training away from the first-team squad. Why not just move on?"

A legitimate question, perhaps, but speaking to the Liverpool Echo this week, Enrique provided the answer yet again, and reiterated:

“I’m focused on playing [for Liverpool]. I’ll continue training as usual and I’m eager to play.”

Enrique also added:

"Several clubs have contacted my agent regarding next season, but If I cannot play here, I’ll do it somewhere else"

Predictably, Enrique is getting grief from Liverpool fans over his alleged greed (he's reportedly on £65k-a-week), but in all fairness:

* Enrique has a contract, so he's perfectly within his rights to see it out. Granted, he has a horrible injury history, but that's part and parcel of football (though if it were down to me, perpetual sicknotes would be docked part of their salary)

* No one forced Liverpool to sign Enrique, and pay him such a massive salary; Why should he leave and take (in all probability) a massive pay cut just because the Reds want him out?

* In September, Enrique stated: "The squad has only one pure left-back [Alberto Moreno] and I know that if I stay I’ll play. I want to prove that some are wrong.” . Why is it so hard to believe that he wants to fight for his place? If the manager ignores him, that's not Enrique's fault, and there's no evidence to suggest that the Spaniard is not working hard enough in training.

Obviously, I'd prefer to see Enrique leave (and he will at the end of the season), but he's perfectly within his rights to stick it out to the end of his contract. By rejecting Newcastle and staying at Anfield, Enrique merely exercised his contractual rights, just as you or I would do in our jobs with a similarly attractive salary on offer.

On a related note: If Liverpool are hemorrhaging money on salaries, then it's down to the club, not the player, and it should be resolved by instituting a more prudent approach to transfers and contracts.

Author: Jaimie K

Liverpool XI vs. Swansea: 8 changes? 'Brilliant' academy sensation starts? Klopp confirms 'difficult decisions' likely

After Thursday's disappointing 1-0 defeat at Villareal, it's back to Premier League action for Liverpool, and with the Reds currently seventh in the Premier League table, a win is vital to move the club closer to European qualification for next season.

Liverpool can qualify for the Champions League by winning the Europa League, but that is by no means a foregone conclusion, and if the Reds fail to progress next Thursday, the league will become all-important in the quest for a European place.

Klopp's pre-match updates:

* On resting players: "We have to make a few difficult decisions with the line-up. We need fresh legs and fresh minds at Swansea. That's what we are thinking about".

* On Ings: "He’s a great guy. I have had half an hour with him on the pitch – it was so unlucky I can’t believe. Since then I know much more about him as a person than as a professional football player".

* On defending: "We had different problems solved a lot of them already. Set-pieces were the worst; we needed to improve and we did. Then we conceded a few other goals, so I'm never happy with conceding goals".

* On Swansea: "We have to try everything for Swansea to beat them - that's the only target for this week and nothing else".

In my view, Daniel Sturridge is the big selection issue for this game.

* After missing out on Thursday, Sturridge will surely start against Swansea, and given his recent form, there's no reason to leave him on the bench (the same also applied on Thursday). What happens if he completes the full 90 minutes?

* Given Klopp's 'management' of his playing time, will that mean Sturridge is on the bench again for Europa League second-leg with Villareal?

For me, the solution is simple: Start Sturridge at Swansea, give him 60-70 minutes, and then start him again vs. Villareal.

My preferred lineup:

----------------- Ward
Flanagan --- Skrtel - Lucas ---- Smith
---------- Stewart --- Allen
----- Milner --- Firmino --- Ojo^
--------------- Sturridge

* Flanagan hasn't played in over a month, so he's surely fresh and ready to play.

* Coutinho reportedly came off early against Villareal with an 'illness', so it can't hurt to rest him a little more.

* Lovren has played a lot of football recently, and Lucas is an able deputy.

Predicting a 1-1 draw, Reds legend Mark Lawrenson told the BBC:

"The Europa League is the priority for Liverpool, so I am expecting Klopp to field some of his fringe players. But even if Liverpool are not at full strength, Swansea will have to be much-improved on their showing against Leicester last weekend".

^ Described by Jurgen Klopp as 'really brilliant'

Author: Jaimie K

'Really disappointed': Carra/Owen blast Klopp for treatment of 'brilliant' £30m Liverpool star. Quit in the summer?

I've argued for weeks that Klopp's refusal to start Daniel Sturridge in the club's biggest games will end up hurting Liverpool, and that's exactly what happened last night at Villareal. Risible blind faith aside, it's clear that Klopp made a mistake, and Reds legends Jamie Carragher and Michael Owen are not amused by the manager's failure to utilise the club's most prolific goalscorer.

Reacting to Liverpool's performance, Carra barked:

"How long before people stop saying 'this front three played away at City'. Sturridge has got to come into the equation".

Carra is spot on here - that's the typical excuse used by fans whenever Coutinho, Firmino, and Lallana play in the same team.

The past is irrelevant - Sturridge is on fire *now*, and after five days rest, and four goals in five games, he should've started at Villareal. Firmino, on the other hand, had just 1 goal/0 assists in the seven games prior to Villareal.

Owen shared Carra's frustration, and when asked about Klopp's decision to ignore Sturridge, he told BT Sport:

"If I was Sturridge I'd be really disappointed. Actions speak louder than words and he must be disappointed with [Divock] Origi being out. You don't feel wanted when you're left out. It will leave a scar".

In his post-match press conference, Klopp offered the following (barely credible) excuse for ignoring Sturridge:

"In a 4-3-3 we didn't play with Daniel until now, so for today - this 4-3-3, 4-5-1, sometimes a diamond - it makes sense that the players played together before and that's why we decided for this lineup."

The idea that Sturridge can't fit into a 433 or a 'diamond' is absolute nonsense, especially since he *constantly* played in those formations under BR.

What amuses me the most is this: Everyone connected with Liverpool (fans, ex-players, managers etc) have constantly bemoaned Sturridge's injury absence, and exhorted him to get fit ASAP to help the Reds progress. Then, when he's finally fit, Klopp leaves him on the bench for the club's biggest games.

I can understand being cautious with Sturridge (i.e. not starting him on a Sunday after a 90-minute Thursday game), but it makes little sense to keep him on the bench for the biggest games of the season after five clear days of rest.

Bottom line: Klopp has ignored Sturridge for Liverpool's biggest games of the season (Dortmund x2; Villareal; Everton), and as Owen suggests, he'll probably feel unwanted right now, and if some big clubs come calling this summer, it won't surprise me in the slightest to see him quit the club.

In the long-term, given his injury history, that may be the best for both parties, but right now, whilst Sturridge is fit and available, Liverpool should be utilising him in a way that benefits the club, and that isn't happening.

^ Sturridge: £30m-rated

Author: Jaimie K

They're Out: Liverpool to sell 'outstanding' £75k-a-week star and 'magnificent' fan-favourite this summer

With Jurgen Klopp facing his first big transfer window, there will inevitably be some high-profile departures over the next few months, and new reports this week suggest that two of the club's most senior players will be first out the door this summer.

According to Sky Sports:

"Jurgen Klopp is planning to restructure his defence this summer. Joel Matip has already signed for next season, with Martin Skrtel and Kolo Toure set to be heading for the exit door".

With Lovren in imperious form; Matip joining the club; Lucas and Gomez available as back-ups, and Klopp reportedly in the market for yet another centre-back, Liverpool are well-covered at centre-back.

If Klopp has to make room in the squad, then Skrtel^ and Toure* are the obvious choices to make way, but with Sakho (possibly) suspended for the next 6-9 months, it doesn't make much sense to dump the club's two most experienced central defenders in the same transfer window.

Matip will be new to the club, Gomez is inexperienced, and Lucas just a makeshift centre-half, so there's needs to be some continuity in the squad, and both Skrtel and Toure can provide that.

In any event, the news of Skrtel's Anfield demise is (IMO) greatly exaggerated. I have absolutely no doubt that he will be at the club next season, and whether fans choose to accept it or not, in-depth statistical analysis of the last three seasons proves that Skrtel is Liverpool's most consistently effective central defender.

Klopp - who, like every top-flight manager, employes exhaustive stats to analyse players - will know this, so fans better start getting used to 'outstanding' Skrtel being back in the team.

As for Toure - he's surely done enough this season to earn a new contract?

^ Reportedly on £75k-a-week

Author: Jaimie K

29 April 2016

Anfield Stunner: £30m attacker hailed as 'best in the world' wants Liverpool transfer

Liverpool are reportedly back in the race for Paris Saint Germain attacker Javier Pastore, who was heavily linked with a move to Anfield during Brendan Rodgers' time at the club.

Pastore was last linked with Liverpool in the summer of 2015, and according to Italian newspaper Tutto Sport this week:

* Pastore - nicknamed 'El Flaco' - is keen to quit PSG this summer.

* The £30m-rated Argentine attacker is allegedly 'ready to sign' for Liverpool.

Some info about Pastore:

* 26-year old attacking midfielder, who can also play on the left. Current contract expires: 2019.

* PSG: 37 goals/43 assists (80) in 2013 games (Goal every 380 mins. G/A every 175 mins)

* This season: 7 goals/assists in 24 games (One every 151 minutes).

* Seven separate injuries this season (Groin, adductor, shinbone, 3x Calf - 29 games missed). Five calf injuries in the last 18 months.

* Aug 2013: Admitted that the pressure at PSG affected his performances: "With the players that have come in, the pressure is no longer only on me. It's better for me to have less pressure. Other players have the burden".

* Apr 2015: Laurent Blanc sounded a note of caution over Pastore: "Javier is just so unpredictable. [He] does things that only talented players can do [but] he [also] does things that can't be rationally explained. He can sometimes put the team at risk [and] I must tell him off."

* Apr 2015: Man Utd legend Eric Cantona raved: "The best player in the world, the most exciting player in the world, is Pastore. He's got something special."

Cantona is entitled to his opinion, but there is no objective evidence to back up his claim that Pastore is the 'best player in the world'. Indeed, Pastore himself has refuted Cantona's claim:

"I thank him [Cantona] for his praise [but] I don't share his view. I don't compare myself with the best. Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo are incredible players".

Pastore's goals/assists ratio at PSG is merely average, and I'd rather see the Reds spend less players whose creative stats are far superior (Andriy Yarmolenko, for example). Additionally, Pastore's recent injury history suggests that he's becoming increasingly injury prone, which is the last thing Liverpool need.

Author: Jaimie K

'They were poor': Macca slates 'average' £27m attacking-duo and makes bold Liverpool claim

After Thursday's 1-0 Europa League defeat at Villareal, Liverpool have it all to do in next Thursday's second-leg, but according to Anfield legend Steve McManaman, the Reds have nothing to fear against their Spanish conquerors.

Analysing the game for BT Sport, Macca mused:

"I don't think they were very good. They [Villareal] were poor, I know they’ve won, but there’s nothing to fear for Liverpool. [Roberto] Soldado and [Cedric] Bakambu^ were average. Liverpool should run all over them at Anfield".

In my view, this is typically arrogant pro-LFC bias. Fellow pundit Michael Owen also trashed Villareal, and both made it sound like Liverpool just need to turn up next week to ensure victory.

Villareal are in the semi-finals for a reason, and they beat Liverpool for a reason: they're an excellent, defensively organised team, and denigrating them in this fashion spectacularly short-sighted.

If Liverpool's players approach the second-leg with a similarly hubristic attitude, then the team will almost certainly be dumped out of the competition.

As history proves, it's not always the most exciting, talented team that wins the big games. Look at Greece at Euro 2004; Chelsea winning the Champions League in 2012, or even Liverpool (as underdogs) in 2005.

I'm quietly confident that Liverpool will prevail next Thursday, but the team will have to earn the victory; it won't just be handed to Klopp on a silver platter by the Anfield crowd, and as Newcastle proved last weekend, Anfield is (often) very far from being a 'fortress'.

* Bakambu: £15m-rated. Soldado: Cost £12m

Author: Jaimie K

Massive Transfer: Liverpool to make €30m offer for 'incredible' attacker who's 'like Robben'

With wingers thin on the ground at Anfield, Liverpool are reportedly considering a massive summer move for Inter Milan wide man Ivan Perisic.

According to Calciomercato and Sky Sports this week:

* Liverpool are Chelsea are tracking 27-year old Perisic.

* Jurgen Klopp is 'ready' to make a €30m offer for the Croatian international.

When asked on Thursday about interest from the Premier League, Perisic told reporters:

"I have a five-year-deal [but] you never know in football, if someone is interested they'll have to talk to Inter".

Some info about Perisic:

* Left-winger, who can also play on the right. Current contract expires: 2020.

Played for Dortmund under Jurgen Klopp for two years (2011-2013).

* Dortmund: 12 goals/7 assists in 64 games (One every 129 mins)

* Inter Milan: 8 goals/5 assists in 35 games (One every 192 mins)

* Apr 2016: Perisic's Agent talked up a transfer to Chelsea: 'The Premier League is the best league in the world and Chelsea is a massive club so we would happily talk about it.'

* Oct 2015: Davor Suker's assessment: "He [Perisic] is incredible; he has strength, talent and a knack of scoring. He's got technical quality that gives a tremendous advantage to his team. Perisic can dribble past three players in one motion. He's decisive like [Arjen] Robben".

High praise indeed, but Perisic's creative output doesn't match the gross hype. For an experienced international in the prime of his career, a goal every 312 minutes/assist every 499 minutes is decidedly average, and isn't an upgrade on any of Liverpool's current players. But wait, I forgot - according to ESPN:

"Perisic is an industrious and self-sacrificing player who is intent in his defensive duties. To criticise him for not scoring enough would be asking him to sacrifice duties that are integral to the team".

In others words, an archetypal Klopp forward player i.e. an attacker who will prioritise defending/pressing over scoring/creating goals. Remind me: How did that work out against Villareal last night?

Suker claims that Perisic is 'like Arjen Robben', but in my view, he sounds more like Adam Lallana *shudder*

Author: Jaimie K

'He'll Play': Klopp confirms 'brilliant' international youngster will 'probably' replace £60k-a-week Liverpool star for Swansea

After Thursday's disappointing 1-0 defeat at Villareal, Liverpool are expected to rest players on Sunday in preparation for the vital second-leg at Anfield, and according to Reds boss Jurgen Klopp, Danny Ward will 'probably' replace Simon Mignolet^.

In his pre-match press conference today, Klopp praised Ward for his recent debut against Bournemouth (after which he described him as 'brilliant'), and then confirmed:

“It is likely he [Ward] will play at Swansea. He will certainly get another game before the end of the season because of the intensity of our schedule. Yes, probably [he will play].”.

The Makeshift team Klopp put out against Bournemouth did the club proud, and Ward, especially, seemed composed and assured on his first Premier league start, and after the game, he enthused:

"It was all about the three points. I'm disappointed not to get a clean sheet but that's football - it can change in an instant."

Since his January recall from Aberdeen, Ward has made just one appearance for Liverpool, which seems odd considering the heavy fixture schedule over the last four months.

Well, it now transpires that Ward has clause in his contract that triggers a 'cash bonus' for Wrexham (his former club) when he features for Liverpool in the Premier League. Could it be that Liverpool held Ward back for so long in a bid to delay having to pay this cash bonus?

Perish the thought!

Things may look rosy for Ward right now, but in my view, it's a false dawn. There's arguably no chance of Klopp selecting him as the club's number, and if Liverpool sign another half-decent 'keeper this summer (Timo Horn, for example), then Ward will inevitably slip to third-choice, which means no game time unless Mignolet and the new 'keeper are injured (i.e. never).

Unless he wants to rot away in the reserves for the next 3 years, with occasional appearances on the bench, Ward - who is 23 next month - should just quit Anfield this summer and go to a team where he can play regular first-team football.

^ Reportedly on £60k-a-week

Author: Jaimie K

Boss Confirms: We 'desperately' tried to sign 'exceptional' £6m Liverpool star. Talks held with 'Agent'

Last summer, 'exceptional' Reds defender Joe Gomez^ reportedly rejected Arsenal and Borussia Dortmund to sign for Liverpool, and it now transpires that Gomez also snubbed another German club on his way to Anfield.

In June 2015, the Liverpool Echo claimed:

"Liverpool are set to beat Arsenal and Borussia Dortmund to the signing of Joe Gomez. Man City, Aston Villa and Hoffenheim have also made approaches".

Now, Ralf Rangnick - whose Agent admitted in 2011 that he's 'interested' in managing Liverpool - has revealed that Gomez also rejected the chance to sign for the LB Leipzig. Speaking to Sport Bild this week, he explained:

"We desperately wanted to sign Joe Gomez, who later chose Liverpool, and we were flying back from London to Leipzig with his agent".

With the greatest respect, it would've been a huge surprise if Gomez rejected the likes of Dortmund, Man City, and Liverpool to sign for Leipzig, who were in Bundesliga 2 at the time.

That said, Rangnick has won promotion with the club this season, so the Bundesliga beckons next year.

As for Gomez: he's still on the sidelines after suffering a season-ending cruciate ligament injury in October, but he's determined to 'continue' where he 'left off' next season. Speaking to The Mirror, he mused:

"I have to sacrifice the off-season to get fit. I’ll be in [at the training ground] for most of the summer, just trying to get fit and working to be in the best possible shape I can to be ready for the start of pre-season".

By the time Gomez returns to first-team action, Liverpool may have another new full-back in the squad, and with Moreno, Smith, Flanagan, and Randall also at the club, there's intense competition for places, so it may not be that easy for the youngster to just pick up where he left off.

^ Cost: £6m

Author: Jaimie K

Done Deal? 'Top-class' £25m international wanted by Liverpool confirms he wants 'transfer' to Bayern Munich

Earlier this month, long-time Liverpool target Mats Hummels confirmed that he's considering a transfer away from Borussia Dortmund, and with the summer transfer window only a couple of months away, the 'top-class' German international has publicly confirmed his future transfer plans.

In a recent interview with German newspaper Bild, £25m-rated Hummels mused:

"I have to make a big decision. I have been back and forth a lot. Age gives you a feeling that you don't have forever to win. I realise in every year I don't win a title, I'm closer to retiring".

Well, it appears that Hummels has made his 'big decision', and it doesn't involve a reunions with former boss Jurgen Klopp. Earlier today, Dortmund posted the following official statement on its website:

"Mats Hummels has informed us that wishes to join Bayern Munich from the 2016/2017 season. The...transfer shall depend on the condition that Bayern provides Dortmund with an extremely valuable offer which reflects [his] high importance".

So much for Jurgen Klopp's fabled 'pull' in the transfer market. To be fair, though, Hummels' decision is no surprise - he wants to win trophies, and recent history proves that Anfield is not the place to achieve that on a regular basis.

At Bayern, however, Hummels is guaranteed to challenge for major titles every season. It's the same reason Luis Suarez left Liverpool for Barcelona; it worked out for him, and I'm sure it'll work for for Hummels.

Another one bites the dust.

Author: Jaimie K

Author: Jaimie K

Transfer Fee Confirmed: Liverpool to pay £8m for 'terrific' international attacker. Decision finally made

Ten months after sealing a deal for Danny Ings, Liverpool have finally learned the allegedly 'terrific' striker's transfer fee, and to be fair, the figure determined by the Professional Football compensation committee (PFCC) is an absolute bargain for the club.

According to multiple reports:

* Liverpool must pay Burnley £6.5m plus a further £1.5m in add-ons (Total: £8m)

* Burnley will also be entitled to 20% of Ings' future transfer fee.

After the ruling, Liverpool released the following statement:

“LFC would like to thank the PFCC panel for their time and diligence in deciding this matter. We believe the process was conducted fairly and we respect the outcome. This chapter is now complete and [Ings] can look forward to a long and successful career at Liverpool.”

Talented British players often sell for grossly inflated transfer fees, so by comparison, Ings is arguably a bargain at £8m. Plus, if Ings ultimately fails at Anfield, the worst case scenario is that Liverpool will make their money back (or close to it), so the risk is minimal (compared to, say, £16m on Mario Balotelli).

Ings appears to be popular amongst Liverpool fans, but I just can't get excited about him. In my view, he's a squad player at best, and will never be prolific enough to be the club's number-one striker. Of course, I'm happy to be proven wrong, and I hope I am over the next few years.

Author: Jaimie K