18 Mar 2014

Coutinho-Killer? - BR to make £25m move for record-breaking Brazilian attacker

Despite being England's top goalscorers, Liverpool are reportedly considering a summer move for Benfica striker Rodrigo Moreno Machado ('Rodrigo'), to presumably compete with Luis Suarez and Daniel Sturridge.

According to The Mirror:

"Brendan Rodgers is monitoring Rodrigo closely this season and is...plotting a £25million summer move.

"Liverpool have good contacts in Portugal and hope to beat the Zenit St. Petersburg to his signature".

Some info about 23-year old Rodrigo:

* Can play anywhere across the front line.
* Current contract expires in 2015.
* 2013: Broke the Spanish U21 team's 22-year old goalscoring record.
* 15 goals in 16 games for Spain's U21 team overall.
* 2013: Helped Spain win the U21 European Championship.

* 2010-11: Spent an unsuccessful year on loan at Bolton, and when asked last week about his time in the Premier League, Rodrigo recalled: "I remember my stay in England with Bolton. The Premier League is tremendously competitive and for me it was a big personal test".


* 11-12: 16 goals/3 assists in 38 apps
* 12-13: 11 goals/6 assists in 39 apps
* 13-14: 12 goals/4 assists in 28 apps
* TOTALS: 39 goals/13 assists in 105 apps
* Goal/assist every 2 games.

Signing another striker is a delicate balancing act. In my view, it's best to go for someone who is:

- Young and (comparatively) inexperienced.
- Won't expect to play every game.
- Will be happy to be third in line after SAS.
- Has the potential to make a contribution when needed.

I'm not sure Rodrigo fits the above criteria. If Luis Suarez stays, he will inevitably be a cover striker for SAS (a likely replacement for Aspas), and given the fact he's a regular for Benfica, will he be happy with reduced pitch time at Anfield? Additionally, Rodrigo admitted recently that his main ambition is to play for the Spain national team, and will a move to LFC help him achieve that goal?

Having said that, Brendan Rodgers may have a different role in mind for Rodrigo. The Brazilian-born attacker has played the number 10 role for Benfica many times this season, and over the weekend, he told Marca:

"It's been my best season so far in Portugal. I was used to playing up front but Jorge Jesus understood that I might be better suited to a deeper role, supporting a centre-forward, and my understanding of that position is improving"

If Rodgers has a similar role in mind for Rodrigo, then it looks like Coutinho could have some stiff competition next season. The Brazilian seems to have lost his place (temporarily) to Joe Allen, and if he doesn't start consistently contributing, he could find it difficult to maintain his first team place. Indeed, after two clean sheets in a row, it's hard to see an argument to change the current XI for the next game, and if the wins keep coming...

Rodrigo for £25m, though? That seems massively over-priced, especially for a player who averages a paltry 4 assists per season.



  1. I'm with you on overpriced...that's more than we payed for Suarez. If he's being brought in as a third striker, aka Borini replacement, we could get better value, and if he's being brought in as competition for the Coutinho role, I'd rather see Roberto Firmino. It's also worth mentioning that Coutinho hasn't exactly lost his place to Joe Allen, as it's not a straight swap...Coutinho is still our best player in his preferred role, and only loses his place to Allen when BR wants to play with different tactics. When it comes to hammering teams on the counter, like we did v. Everton and Arsenal, Coutinho is the master.

  2. Competition within is effing good for the team. It is always about the Liverpool Team.

  3. I would go for alvaro morata from real madrid, this kid looks a class act. I agree 25'million for a player whos contract runs out in 2015 is ridiculous money to spend. We could get far better players for that money.

  4. We should put a crafty decimal place in invisible ink on the cheque so we only have to pay £2.5mil.

  5. Frankie Fletcher6:23 pm, March 18, 2014

    Borini is proving at sunderland he can score pretty often when played (in a less attack minded team as well). He also pretty much fits into the criteria you listed above and has recently stated his desire to play for Liverpool. I think we should give him more of a chance just as we did Lucas and Hendo

  6. Personally would rather get an older experienced player who is happy in that role. Someone who is a fox in the box... di Natale.

  7. We will certainly benefit with a third striker, imagine the difference Aspas could have made had he been anywhere near good enough. Imagine a game we are drawing then you bring on your third striker who is real quality, and a direct threat alongside Suarez and Sturridge, replacing either Couts, Sterling, Allen/Lucas or Henderson depending on how the game is being played out.

    This is what we need to have coming off the bench, players that can and DO make a difference. Aspas looked in pre-season like he might be able to contribute but he just doesn't look to have it in him, the club is too big a step for him. Borini I'm not too sure about, seems a bit one dimensional for me. Seeing his name on the bench doesn't inspire the kind of certainty that he can change a game in our favor, sure he can poke a goal or two but is not the type of player that can grab the match by the scruff of the neck in an instant of coming on.

    Furthermore if we do add this quality addition striker, not necessarily the one mentioned in this article, then we can rotate strikers,keeping them fresh and the opposition will have to deal with the possibility of having Sturridge/Suarez come on after being tired out by our pressing play for most of the game.

    We should not be signing players of Aspas, Moses, Borini or Cissokho's quality once we have qualified for the Champions League.

  8. For what you described as the parameters for a young striker, I nominate the newly crowned player of the year in the Championship...Danny Ings. I'll bet we could get him for less than 25mil too.

  9. Should we not go for Remy? And as FF said, bring Borini back as the 4th striker

  10. The mirror-enough said :)

  11. There are tons of relatively-unknown footballers that cost ridiculous money. Can't really see the role he has with LFC apart from being a regular bench player he ever comes here. Also, I don't know what magic this boy can do that Aspas, Borini, Luis Alberto and Suso cannot. In any case, I seriously don't think we have a very shallow bench. There are far too many occasions that BR could have given play time to his bench players but he did not do it, mysteriously. This boy will more likely not be an exception. It looks more than ever likely that LFC will play in next year's Champions League. Hopefully they can spend money wisely and upgrade the first-team squad, sanely. I thought both left and right back and defensive midfield are positions that can be looked at. In any case, not sure if anyone thinks the same in LFC.

  12. I think Borini is certainly good enough to be a backup attacker for LFC. If we can play in next season's Champion's League, which looks highly likely at the moment, I think he will be more than happy to play second-fiddle to SAS.

  13. We most certainly should!

  14. Trust me, Rodrigo is going to be a class act.. Well, that's if FM 2013 is anything to go by ;-)

  15. Remy for me. Or maybe Mitroglou if Fulham go down

  16. I would rather go for Roberto Firmino as a CAM and would bid for Alexander Lacazette as a third striker from Lyon which will cost 25 m for both players

  17. That would be the Mitroglou that Magath announced as not fit enough to play in the PL?

  18. jaimie is a fat shit

  19. Exactly what I think re: another striker. We need a player like a Welbeck, or a Chicarito when he had just transferred to Man utd. Trying to appease a top striker on the bench isn't worth the hassle.

  20. Did you watch Real Madrid's match earlier? The lad missed about 4 sitters, no thanks

  21. As a back up, goal capable striker who is able to play in an attacking midfield role, and who can presumably step in to give the SAS a break next season, he looks to b a potentially a good signing. In my view the thing to avoid is just looking for backup. Backup when we're in the Champions League, hopefully is not good enough. We need players hungry enough to push the first eleven, but lacking in prima donna qualities so they don't chuck the dummy out of the pram if they don't play every game. Right now we don't need to rotate, but it's something we'll have to get used to next season. Ideally for that much we should look at players from a stronger league, but as we know, strength of a league does not always determine the quality of the player playing in it.

  22. This player not to good for playing for LFC.He only have good skill with left foot.But with right foot not many special about it.25 milion very expensive for this talent.Juan Itturbe or diego costa maybe the good answer for LFC.

  23. FSG need to back B Rodgers heavily in the next two transfer windows with £70-£90M and then the £35-£45M he will bring to club off loading these 8 dead wood average or injury prone players and 1 world class player he no longer trusts or has time for:

    1: GK: B Jones 2: GK: P Reina 3: CB: S Coates

    4:CB: K Toure 5: RB: M Kelly 6: AM:L Alberto

    7:RW/ LW: O Assaidi 8: FD: I Aspas 9: FD: F Borini

    And also the two abyzmal loan signings who have offered the club very little this season need to be shown the door:

    10: LB: A Cissokho 11: RWF/ LWF: V Moses

    B Rodgers needs to bring in 3 attacking players in the summer and 5 defensive players in the summer , once he has shipped out the 11 players above.

    Here are the 3 attacking players B Rodgers needs to bring to club:

    1: AM: A Lallana(25) Of Southampton for 12-17M
    2: LW: Y Konoplyanka(25) Of Dnipro for £14-£16M
    3: FD: L Remy(26) Of QPR for £10-£12M

    Those 3 players offer more class quality to attack: Those 3 players are off Champions league class and quality. Whereas Alberto, Aspas, Borini, Moses and Ossaidi currently are not.

    This season our defence has been problem, we do not have enough class or quality competition for places.

    We need to bring in these 5 Defensive players in summer: So there is class,quality competition for every defensive position at club, so everyone is kept on their toes week in week out and so if there is any injuries or suspensions, there is a player of similar class and quality ready to step in.

    Young players for Now and Future of Club:

    1: GK: A Mccarthy(24) Of Reading for £4-£7M to compete and Cover Mignolet(25) at club for next 5-8 years

    2: RB: N Clyne(23) Of Southampton for £6-£9M to compete and Cover G Johnson(29) for next 2 years as Johnson may not be there after 31

    3: CB: S Caulker(22) Of Cardiff for £9-£11M to compete and Cover Skrtel for next 2 years as Skrtel may not be at club after 31

    4: LB: B Davies(20) Of Swansea for £5-£8M to compete and Cover Enrique(27) for next 3 years as Enrique may not be at club after 30

    5: DM: M'Vila(23) Of Rubin Kazan for £7-£10m to compete and Cover Leiva(26) for the next 3-4 years as Lucas may not be at club after 30

    These 5 class, quality players are all under 25, they will all strengthen squad and they will all compete with their opposite team mate for the position week in week out, these players will all want to be the number 1 at club , so it would only benefit club in having more class,competition, hunger, youth in side.

    Those 8 players i mentioned B Rodgers should bring to club this summer, once he has shipped out all the dead wood average or injury prone players and players he no longer has faith in, Club would hit another level with those 8 players.

    And those are the type of young class quality hungry players we need at club, if we are to keep improving year after year and to be a force again not only in league but in Europe. We need better, bigger, more class and quality in squad if we are to be a success in Champions league and on a domestic front.

  24. Wahey, Football Manager brought to life!

    Seriously... Look how long it took individual players to settle in. Players like Lucas, Henderson and Joe Allen (who seems to be coming good now). You want us to sign 8 players, have a look at Tottenham and see where their spending spree has got them. Also, signing and having top quality players doesn't guarantee anything. United have Rooney, RVP and Mata - around £100m worth. Doesn't mean they can play together.

  25. What about a Defensive midfielder?

  26. Rickie Lambert is our man. He is scouse(ish), can play provider and finisher, has never played at a top club (or CL) so would jump at the chance, would not cost 25 million and at 32 is still very fit and has a couple of good years left in him. Plus his experience makes him reliable and more likely to deliver when called upon. Sturridge, Suarez, Lambert and Sinclair are enough to cover a season and give us everything we need for a good mix. People seem to forget we only need a targetman as second cover. When Sturridge is out Suarez can slot right in and the solution is on the wings. It's wide players we need. Not a bunch of strikers.

  27. There is no way you would get 45 million for the players you listed. Possibly only Borini will sell for more than 5million. Also signing too many players can unsettle an already very good squad.
    The players mentioned are all good players though, just don't think we need so many.

  28. toptoptoptoptopplayergerrard10:54 am, March 19, 2014

    I personally don't think it is necessary to buy a player for the number 10 role as we already have Suso who in my humble opinion can play this role.

    Pros from allowing Suso to be lieutenant for the number 10 role

    No transfer fee, has an understanding of how BR works, will be another player who qualifies as home grown, would not be disappointed at being on the bench as he is young and still learning his trade.

    Cons from allowing Suso to be lieutenant for the number 10 role

    Probably would prefer to play his football in Spain.
    YNWA. LMS (Let Moyes Stay)

  29. Borini we can get 7-9M for off Sunderland , if they spent £10M on S Fletcher so we can get £7-£9M off them for Borini. O Assaidi is doing well at stoke and we can get £4-£5M off Stoke as he offers the more class, creativity, goals and width than any of the wingers they currently have at club. Coates is wanted in italy and back in Uruguay and can be sold for £4-£7M abroad, Reina £4-£8m can and should be sold to any club apart from Napoli who can get him for £4.5m, Aspas is still hot property in spain £5-£7m, Alberto we can sell for £4-£6M. The three players we may struggle to ship out of club are B Jones, Injury prone M Kelly and OAP misake prone K Toure.

    The other players we can bring in between £4-£7M for most of them and Borini we can ask for more as he is sunderlands top goalscorer and has scored the most vital goals for them over the course of the season.

  30. Allen, what are you talking about football Manager.

    We have a pathetic weak squad: we have have 10-13 good class quality players at club. And 9-12 average dead wood or injury prone players in the squad.

    How many players did B Rodgers sign in the summer? 8? How many of them have been a success? 2( Mignolet and Sakho)

    The reasons the others have been flops is simply because they were either free transfer, cheap players brought on potential or loan players who they clubs didn't want or need at club so we took gamble on them and it did not pay off.

    You get what you pay for Mignolet cost £9M and has had his moments and needs real class quality competition for his place and Sakho cost £16-£18M and even though it took him to adjust to physicality and speed of premiership before his injury him and Skrtel looked the most solid centre back partnership we have at the club.

    Our defence this season has conceded too many goals due to mistakes, there is not enough class, quality competition for places within defensive positions at club.

    So B Rodgers needs to bring 5 Defensive players to club this summer and ship out the 3 defensive players who just sit on our bench getting paid good wage every week, rarely playing or contributing to club's season off the books. ( GK: B Jones, CB: S Coates and RB: M Kelly)

    And also too ship out our mistake prone CB K Toure(33) who is 5 years past his best, Toure's best days where when he was playing for Arsenal.

    The 8 players i mentioned B Rodgers should bring to club, 5 of them are British

    GK: A Mccarthy(24) CB: S Caulker(22)
    RB: N Clyne(23) LB: B Davies
    AM: A Lallana(25)

    So they would fit the pro rata of League and also so the core of the squad would be British

    And just like Flannagan, Henderson and Sterling have excelled over the season, those 5 class quality players would excel also and offer good class quality competition for places in squad.

    The 3 players B Rodgers should bring in this summer are: DM: M'Vila(23) Of Rubin Kazan
    LW / LWF: Y Konoplyanka(25)
    FD: L Remy(26)

    Allen(24) and Henderson(23) were always going to excel under B Rodgers, they both are young, they both have good energy, mobility, bit of pace with them, they both are good passers of the ball, both team players.

    The only thing both them players needed to work on was their attacking instincts: creativity, scoring goals.

    B Rodgers sides always have young players who play with intensity, alot of movement, pace and speed in their side. We saw it first hand two seasons ago when he brought Swansea to Anfield with J Allen dictating play against us.

    We need to bring in proven players with class, quality: not waste millions on potential or dud poor loan signing that their own clubs don't want: Alberto, Aspas, Assaidi, Borini, Cissokho,Moses.

    Llori is the only player we brought in summer this season with alot of potential that we should keep.

    United have good £100M attack, £100M midfield. But their midfield doesn't dominate games and can't supply Mata, Van Persie and Rooney with the ammunition they need.

    The 8 players i have said we should bring to club are class quality proven players, not potential or players who are not wanted by their clubs. The 8 players mentioned would strengthen the squad dramatically. And class, quality cover when injuries and suspensions kick in.

    If Mignolet was injured now could B Jones do the same no

    If G Johnson is injured now, Could M Kelly do same job NO

    If Coutinho is injured could Alberto do same Job NO

    If Sturridge was injured could Aspas score the goals for us NO

    we have too many dead wood average players at club, B Rodgers needs to clear that by summer and bring in the class quality 8 players i mentioned and we will see if they flop. I doubt it very much

  31. rodgers has al;ready stated he wont burn money. He will pick his targets carefully and we will know whom and when rodgers signs a player. the rest is just speculation.