19 Jan 2015

Lawro insists: LFC need 'incredible' €12m midfield star at Anfield, and there's 'no chance' of BR selling

During the first few months of the season, Lucas Leiva made several public statements bemoaning his lack of playing time at Anfield, and subtly threatened to quit the club unless Brendan Rodgers granted him more playing time. Lucas's tactics seem to have worked - he's now in the midst of an extended run in the team, and Liverpool legend Mark Lawrenson has urged Rodgers to shelve plans to sell the Brazilian.

In recent months, Lucas - - recently hailed by Rodgers for his 'incredible' attitude - has made clear his frustration at playing a bit role at Liverpool:

* Oct 2014: He warned: “I want to play. I need to find a solution either at Liverpool or at another club. [if] I don’t find space at Liverpool, I should start to make a move".

* Oct 2014: Lucas confirmed that Napoli tried to sign him over the summer: “There was something with Napoli. Benitez always had great faith in me.”

* Nov 2014: He told Radio Marca: "I must think about leaving as there is no room for me at Liverpool. I am looking around, given I am not playing".

* Dec 2014: Lucas's Agent, Henrique Coelho, told reporters: “Is it possible that Lucas could leave Liverpool in January? Yes, naturally. Lucas really likes Rafa Benitez.”

After the Reds' 2-0 victory over Aston Villa on Saturday, Lawro hailed Lucas's contribution to the Reds' improved form, and urged Rodgers to keep the midfielder at the club. He told the Liverpool Echo:

"He [Lucas] has been a fixture in a side that has started to do well. He is solid if unspectacular. But most teams need a player like that, even the top ones. There’s surely no chance Liverpool will let him go in this month’s transfer window".

There's no denying the fact that Liverpool's recent Premier League resurgence has coincided with Lucas run in the team, and the stats confirm this:

Prem without Lucas this season:

* P5 W0 D1 (20%) L4 (80%)
* Goal conceded: 10 (2 per game)
* Goals scored: 3 (0.6 per game)
* Clean sheets: 0
* 1.2 points per game (Prem)

Prem with Lucas this season:

* P12 W8 (66%) D3 (26%) L1 (8%)
* Goal conceded: 12 (1.0 per game)
* Goals scored: 21 (1.7 per game)
* Clean sheets: 5 (42% of games)
* 2.25 points per game (Prem)

The stats don't lie: with Lucas in the team, Liverpool are unbeaten in 92% of league games; the team also scores more/creates less, and achieves more clean sheets.

It's not just Lucas, of course, but he's clearly having a positive impact on Liverpool's results, so at this moment in time, Lawro is probably right that Liverpool shouldn't sell.

However, is Lucas the solution long-term? Should the Reds give up on the idea of signing a new dedicated defensive midfielder and just stick with the €12m-rated Brazilian?

online survey


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84 comments:

  1. Keep him til the summer- we need him now

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  2. Keep him full stop. Only 27, experienced, and been with Liverpool about 5 years now so is a great link for the new and younger players.


    i would say he should have at least another 18 months with us.

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  3. You may improve them but a natural goal scorer doesn't have to think in those situations. And also most of the time you won't get time to think..

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  4. Lucas has been our most important player this season. The stats really show that. He is not irreplaceable but why this huge urge to sell him in Summer?


    First of all we would gain only pennies. His importance to our team is much bigger than his value. He's 40m player for us atm but his price would be max 10m. Then we should get a new guy. Good real defensive midfielders aren't easy to find and they are one of the most wanted players in the market in addition to forwards. The best ones wouldn't even come to pool, they would choose a better team and the young potential ones cost a fortune.

    So let's keep Lucas around. He can be an important player for us the next 18 or 30 months. Can is for the future and a team needs two defensive midfielders so he isn't justifiable solution on his own.

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  5. I think lfc should not make many changes to midfield that is not our priority


    .......................Markovic/Ibe................Coutinho/Lallana.............Sterling
    ........................................................Henderson........Can/Lucas






    That should be enough in my opinion , Henderson is gonna be our deep lying play mker , Can as cdm , Lucas as a player who can come in and shore things up. Allen as squad player.




    we need :
    One Goalkeeper
    One left back
    Those are the two main positions

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  6. If we make Europe (CL or EL), we should have plenty of games to spare.


    If he does complain about time, I agree that we should let him leave, if only in respect to what he's done for us (and because his stock would be high=max return). But if he keeps his mouth shut, I say keep as a backup/competition.

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  7. With time and patience why can he not be?
    Maybe lfc should never had played Fowler or Owen because they were not world class strikers but youth players?

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  8. They were goalscorers from day 1 !

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  9. I completely agree. I would throw in a striker too, but we need to sell first. Even though we have no one good, we won't be able to support 7 strikers (Sturridge, Borini, Lambert, Balo, Aspas, Origi, Signing), regardless of ability.


    Some other things that aren't so much "needs" as they are just "wants" would be a backup senior FB once Enrique and Johnson leave (Arbeloa?) and a RCB to challenge Skrtel.

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  10. If you don't believe it then why do you give the article a title of "Done Deal"? Smacks of headline journalism, a cheap way to get hits on the site.

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  11. They were goal scorers straight away! They knew instinctively how to finish . personally I think sterling would get as many goals from the wing or no.10. I'm not saying he's doing a bad job as a striker just that IN MY OPINION he won't get enough goals up top.and by the way I hope he is the next Thierry Henry! !

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  12. Ah yes - - - and even his more obscure blues stuff

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  13. well reading your comment i think we are in agreement......and as for better coaching for walcott then yes maybe at an early age he could/should have had better finishing coaching, I didn't say it was easy and I also wasn't saying you could teach someone to be natural at something, that's a contradiction in itself, And I was talking about kids and young players not an established 25 year old.

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  14. I don't think left back is a priority. Moreno has looked good, Enrique's adequate backup and Flanno will be back soon. Markovic and Can can both play there if need be too

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  15. Don't know him....is Bozwallox any good?

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  16. Must admit I'm still inducting myself into the Hendrix Experience so I'm not too familiar with his more obscure stuff. Any tips? Saw a nice acoustic run of Hear My Train a Comin' on YouTube the other day, which caught me off guard - just pure blues magic

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  17. Hey Joe is a classic

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  18. He's the dog's........

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  19. Oh man I love Hey Joe, esp as Joe is what some friends call me haha; cheers, Jock

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  20. Cheers Gene! Will check them out. I'd heard Albert King and SRV do Born under a bad sign; never realised it was Jimi! sheesh. Thanks pal

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  21. You're right- Check out Captain Coconut and Peace in Mississippi

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  22. but Sterling is still young enough to be coached to "improve" his finishing and nip the bad habits in the bud.

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  23. ah I've heard he just hangs around waiting to shoot..

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  24. I'm sure he will improve but poor finishing isn't a bad habit.you just can't teach it.at the end of the day we both agree he's a top player and if he bangs in 20 goals next season as a striker I will be quite happy to eat my words!

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  25. If Lucas was at the level he was in 2011 I think he would be the next club captain be he has got everything required to the job. He has got back to a certain level and the formation suits his style of play so he spend one more season at the club as his experience on/off the pitch will be vital while Jordan Henderson adjusts to the new role.

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  26. Yawn , obviously this will not happen. Waste of my time reading this . Apparently were goner get Messi for £100 mill but I don't believe it myself cause he's very important to the Barca team lol

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  27. Just had a gander at Once I had a woman... trippy. Thanks for all the tips, gents. Appreciated

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  28. Peter from Perth WA12:50 am, January 20, 2015

    The Reds need a Suarez-like player ..... We had a Suarez-like player but he was driven out of England by Self-opinionated wannabees whose motives were self indulgence by big-noting themselves.

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  29. Lucas has been reborn for sure. Still, we need to sell the remaining deadwood and get a
    1goalie, 1 striker (maybe 2) and a class DM.

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  30. spot on Jock. Goalie, striker and DM are the priorities clear as day............Moreno, manquillo, Can , Markovic, and Flanno more than cover the flanks...............

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  31. Lord he has failed!?!? Is this the same Mario who at 21 had already won 3 league winners medals, 3 domestic cups and the champions league!
    Behave!!!

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  32. There is no way FSG are going to give this manager anymore money.. they are waiting for the summer when they can fire him and give the money to the new guy.. hopefully deboer... then we can forget about this clown (as will the epl) and he will sink back to managing the watfords of the world where he belongs...

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  33. There is none bcuz its all crap.. no way he signs with us or we pay that much for one player... FSG won't do it.. too cheap..

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  34. We should definitely keep him. He's in good form, but overall he's not the long-term solution if we want to challenge for trophies. I'd love him as a backup.

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  35. Rodgers said himself that last season the team didn't play with a defensive midfielder. Stevie was a regista, not there to make tackles but to direct the play forward. When you've got the world's best up front that's what you do - whatever is needed to get them the ball and think about defending (or not) later. And no, Stevie, was not effective as a defensive midfielder. This season, when the talent upfront was vastly reduced the holes in the midfield and the poor defence was simply highlighted to a greater degree but nothing had actually changed in that part of the field.


    Lucas is a defensive midfield player but he does have decent go-forward as well. He can make the tackle and also make the pass. Of course he can - a Brazillian who can't dribble and pass the ball is an aberration and Lucas is not that. But he's still not quite the all-round volante that Liverpool need. He's doing a very good job, better than anyone else in the team and I personally think we should keep him UNLESS we can get someone better. The problem is getting someone better. It's not as easy as people think.


    What I keep saying to people is that the way Liverpool play the game we can't just have a combative physical type in that role. Liverpool at their absolute best had Gerrard directing the play and it worked beyond a doubt. You can't argue with 100+ goals in a season. Liverpool were never so effective as when Gerrard was in that holding role and while Suarez and Sturridge were scoring the goals it was still vitally important that Stevie G was there at the back. If he wasn't it simply wouldn't have worked so well. There are few players in the game who have his determined go-forward vision; deny that if you will but it's simply the truth. Put Lucas in that position last season and we might have been better defensively but it stands to reason that we wouldn't have scored as many goals. Stevie's assist count alone makes that obvious.


    So in my view what Liverpool need is a player who most importantly can direct the play from the back and secondly can make some tackles. Ideally you get the full all-round player but there are only so many Makaleles and Busquets in a generation. So if something has to be sacrificed it seems obvious enough that it will be defence. Liverpool will always prioritise scoring goals as the way to win a match. Maybe Can will be that player in a year or two but he's still developing and has more improving to do. In the meantime I think Lucas is pretty high up there in terms of being the all-rounder that we need. It's working in the current system so why would we change it? Only if the club found that truly top class midfielder who can boss the game from the back would Lucas be relegated back to the bench. If that player isn't brought in this coming summer then Lucas will surely stay.

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  36. benzema has no invention? did u see his assist for ronaldo in the last game. hes a sill full player and he fits the profile we need. not sure if he justifys sucha hight fee though or if we can even afford that with his wages. i dont see it happening. ur jus feeding of the daily newspaper. that newspaper has never got it right

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  37. So a deal is agreed but we are preparing a 50 million pound bid ok cool no worries and I have agreed to buy a Maserati and the paperwork is done but first I need a lottery wimning to fund the cheque for it LOL hilarious

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  38. If bullshit was music, we would have a symphony! We have all seen this one before: Sanchez, Costa, Mikhitarian, reus, saleh........enough already.......

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  39. Gary,
    I did that last game and Benz was fantastic and unselfish..... I would love to see him here but there is no way on earth FSG shells out the cash, especially given the fabulous committee's and BR's track record.

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  40. Markovic is nowhere close to Ibe IMO...........

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  41. Balotelli's feet are like cement blocks; slow and slower.......You take one look at his physique and you would swear he would be all world. Watch 2-3 games and you no for sure you were only hallucinating.........(partial reference to the Jimi Hendrix conversation thread)..............

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  42. A parting gift- look up Woke up this morning and found yourself dead think it's a Bleeding Heart album good luck tonite I'm goin fishin for 2 days

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  43. Sterling lacks the killer "shoot" and instinct. We would be destroying him and blame him for failing "to adapt". I dislike this idea of changing people from their positions and demanding that they adapt. Why not just buy the players for those positions? While Im huge fan of these three (in their actual positions), I fear a front three of Ibe, Sterling and Origi is far too lightweight to stand against defences like Azpilicuata,Ivanovic,Terry, Zouma; or the Shawcrosses and Mangalas, Kompanys of this world

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  44. Naa Pogba cant sing.

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  45. who does Jimi Hendrix play for...is he any good??

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  46. it still baffles me that brendan rodgers has not been arrested for being a wasteful spender

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  47. Sterling will never be a out and out striker...if you look at the amount of chances and some easy ones that he misses...Sturridge would have converted maybe 60-70% of those the prime example being Sterlings failed chip against Villa at the weekend. Sterlings natural finishing ability is poor and his decision making is at times even worse. His strength is tearing down the wings and Liverpoool need to make the most of that...never mind trying to turn him into striker...at his age strikers aren't made they already posses that skill...let him develop as a winger we will benefit more from that

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  48. The problem is, the stats do lie. Our improved results as of late have coincided with a lot of things, not just Lucas. Sterling started playing up front which added last year's speed on the break and caused teams to sit deeper against us again. We started playing three at the back. It's the unlikeliest back three I could have ever imagined for Liverpool but by some miracle and in spite of some horrible defending and goalkeeping we managed to keep a couple of clean sheets. Markovic started to feature more, again adding speed to our attack. I do agree we should keep him till the summer for two reasons. I don't see anyone better available and I wouldn't give any money to Rodgers and the transfer committee until we finish inside the top four this season.

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  49. That was actually the real suarez that we had!

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  50. Nothing at all to do with him behaving like a t***?
    Idiot.

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  51. My point is that both players took the first chance have a dig at BR. Happened before, and I can see it happening again, with Mario leaving(now or summer) even though he got more playing time than he deserved. Man management ain't as good as people (used to) say, me thinks..
    As for their quality, I think Assaidi was better here than Aspas and Alberto combined and we already had an offer from Stoke(or it was just media crap) to sell him for profit- he wasn't that bad. As for Suso-I really think he'll achieve a lot. He had a very good loan spell in struggling Almeria, including awesome performance vs Barca. Social media abuse, no discipline, who knows what were problems, but they both had quality to at least be sold for more.

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  52. My point is that both players took the first chance have a dig at BR. Happened before, and I can see it happening again, with Mario leaving(now or summer) even though he got more playing time than he deserved. Man management ain't as good as people (used to) say, me thinks..

    As for their quality, I think Assaidi was better here than Aspas and Alberto combined and we already had an offer from Stoke(or it was just media crap) to sell him for profit- he wasn't that bad. As for Suso-I really think he'll achieve a lot. He had a very good loan spell in struggling Almeria, including awesome performance vs Barca. Social media abuse, no discipline, who knows what were problems, but they both had quality to at least be sold for more...

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  53. Go out and buy Electric Ladyland - don't download it, buy the CD, at least. Turn the lights down and lie back and absorb.

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  54. Thanks a bunch, Gene. Looking forward to spending a few happy hours trawling the web this evening for these. Enjoy the fishing!

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  55. Ah, I downloaded it recently, can imagine the CD must be mind-blowing. Will have a look around; cheers!

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  56. Who cares what two players; who were not good enough to cut it think, they are bound to be bitter. Nothing to see here move along

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  57. People used to say that about Suarez that he was wasteful and his chance conversion rate was poor, then just look what happened.

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  58. 50m wtf to much by a long way

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  59. Yep we need his experience and to offer stability for the younger players now that Stevie is going. He has found his form and I am sure will step up in the more senior role .

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  60. Hendrix plays "Underground" now

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  61. I distinctly remember Benzema saying he was too big for LFC last summer...He is a good team player, can't argue with that, Ronadlo probably wouldn't get half the goals he does if not for Benzema's generosity, but he made his feeling s of LFC clear... Why on earth Real would get rid is a mystery anyway...

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  62. Cilla Black, nuff said!

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  63. I love Machine Gun from the Isle of Wight album... Absolutely awesome guitar... In fact the whole ablum is awesome, till the crowd start screaming for the older classics...

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  64. Dodged a bullet for sure with Salah. Jury's out over Mhkitaryan and I can't help but notice how often Reus is injured.....

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  65. Benzema(27) should not be brought to club after his rant about he was too big for LFC Last summer, B Rodgers or the next manager needs to ship out F Borini(23) and R Lambert(32) first and foremost and then they should spend £40M on these three class quality strikers.


    Hopefully B Rodgers brings in one of them this Transfer window:


    C Benteke(24) Of A Villa for £16-£20M Upgrade on R Lambert(32)
    L Vietto(21) Of Villareal for £10-£14M Upgrade on F Borini(23)
    L Adriano(27) Of S Donesk for £5-£6M now or on pre contract in Summer.


    Those three strikers would all suit the club and bring more class, creativity, goals, mobility, pace, speed to attack than Balotelli(24), Borini(23) and R Lambert(32) have so far this season.

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  66. Top man, Stan. Sounds awesome. I can't imagine it gets worse after the crowd starts screaming for the classics... :-)

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  67. Yes, that was a low blow from Benzema, if the quote is accurate.

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  68. B Rodgers should not sell L Leiva(28) now but in the summer he should sell him and replace him with two DM's , so the squad can have to top class DM competing with one another week in week out for starting position and also if there is a injury or suspension to one of them then there is good class cover ready to step in and offer defence and Gk same class quality protection in centre of park.


    B Rodgers or the new manager should spend £34M on these two DM in the summer:


    A Song(27) Of Barcelona for £10-£14M
    L Bender(25) Of Bayer Leverkusen for £15-£20M


    The side looks is more solid because of L Leiva(27), E Can(20) and M Sakho(24) being in side and the fact B Rodgers has stopped tinkering with the defence . And are starting to get used to the system and one another week in week out in the starting line up

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  69. It doesn't get worse, It's all amazing, you can just sense Jimi wanted to play his new material and he wasn't allowed to by the crazy crowd...You don't argue with 400,000 crazy fans at 3 in the morning.... You should check out the DVD, Blue Wild Angel, live at the Isle of Wight...

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  70. This prick said last summer that Liverpool are far too small of a club for him to join so let him stay at Real and keep on being Ronaldo's bitch. If Liverpool are planning on spending 40 million not that there's been any evidence what so ever of FSG spending this kind of money on a player for Liverpool since Andy Carroll flopped and even then it was money from the sale of Torres to the chavs and not their own money. They never put their hands in their pockets where Liverpool are concerned except to buy the club on the cheap. The redsox now there's a team they've no problems spending money on as we saw when they paid 200 million dollars for 2 rounders players during the off season. If they are actually going to fund the purchase of a world class player next summer and that's a massive if they should put another 10 on top of the 40 and buy Cavani at least he has respect for Liverpool.

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  71. If this happens, I'll show my bollocks to Penelope Cruz.

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  72. It was low blow and for club to even consider looking at him after that is comical and shocking.


    C Benteke(24) Of A Villa, L Vietto(21) Of Villareal and L Adriano(27) Of S Donesk would all cost the club minmum of £35M so £5-£10M Cheaper than what R Madrid want from Disrespectful K Benzema(27)


    And all will be class quality forwards FOR NOW and Future of CLUB

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  73. I don't believe this rumour neither. Rodgers is not the problem atrracting big players. It always comes down to wages, and realistically we don't want to risk paying big wages to players with reputations. Look at Utd with Falcao.....huge mistake at a huge cost. Liverpool are now the pridently run club, unfortunately that does not put us in the echelons of Chelsea, Man City or Utd. The fight will be for fourth.

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  74. I do not play football manager,


    You are saying i am on football manager.


    Yet M Balotelli(24), F Borini(23)and R Lambert(32) cost the club around £31M combined.


    The three class quality strikers i have mentioned would cost the club £4M more and create and score more goals than the three we have at club anytime of the year.


    As they are simply better players who would suit any system

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  75. The dude Abides- yea he can ghost behind any defence

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  76. Watching him again tonight ... admittedly it's only against China in the Asian cup ... he does strike me as having quite a few qualities that Mignolet is missing. His distribution looks pretty good, he can find attacking players in the outfield and he's very comfortable in that sweeper role outside his box. He also isn't shy about getting his defence in order. At one point he grabbed the near post defender and shoved him towards the man he was supposed to be marking, then even after the corner was dealt with he kept talking about it. Liverpool need that kind of leadership. It would remain to be seen if Ryan is as comfortable pushing around Skrtel and Sakho as he is Trent Sainsbury. So there are some qualities there and he's showing them at an international level. I would guess as a minimum he's an upgrade on Jones, kind of obvious given who is number one for their national side.

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  77. Hippo Krit "Bill" Caribou™4:11 am, January 27, 2015

    Who cares. This is a girls sport.

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