2 Nov 2015

Klopp's First Transfer? Liverpool can sign 'fantastic' goal-machine who's outscoring Suarez/Neymar for £15m

The Liverpool-Jamie Vardy rumours refuse to die, and with the Reds reportedly pursuing a January deal for the 'fantastic' striker, it appears that Leicester City are definitely willing to sell.

The story so far:

Oct 2014: ESPN claimed: "Liverpool and Tottenham are keeping a close eye on Leicester City's in-form striker Jamie Vardy, sources have told ESPN FC".

Oct 2014: Leicester boss Claudio Ranieri told reporters: “If he [Vardy] wants to find a great club it would cost a lot. If big names want to buy him they [must] have the money. Not many teams can buy him now".

Oct 2014: Vardy scored his eighth goal in eight league games, and equalled Liverpool striker Daniel Sturridge's record. In the history of the Premier League, only Ruud Van Nistelrooy can top that. The Dutchman once scored in ten consecutive league games for Manchester United, and who's to say Vardy won't match that (or even exceed it) in the coming weeks?

Now, an alleged exclusive in the Daily Star claims:

"Leicester will demand £15m for Jamie Vardy. Tottenham, Liverpool, West Brom and Borussia Dortmund have all shown an interest".

Is Vardy - currently Europe's third top goalscorer (behind Aubameyang, Lewandowski, and Muller) worth £15m?

* He's 28, so will have minimal sell-on value, but if his goals propel Liverpool (or whatever team he signs for) to success, then that won't matter.

* British players are always grossly overpriced, but £15m for one of the top scorers in European football seems comparatively reasonable, though the price could also be bargained down.

* Vardy has 13 goals/assists in 12 games this season (Goals/assists every 79 minutes), and if he can produce that playing with comparatively inferior players at Leicester, what can he do playing with the likes of Coutinho and Firmino?

* Statistically, Vardy is currently the Premier League's top striker on every level: goals, chances created, touches in the box, tackles won, shots on target, and chance conversion.

* Last season, Vardy grabbed just 5 goals in 34 league games, which suggests this season is a purple patch of form. However, he also contributed 10 assists, so overall, he outperformed both Coutinho (14 goals/assists), and Lallana (10 goals/assists). Not bad for a player who was in non-league football 3 years ago.

In my view, Vardy is a clear upgrade on Origi and Ings. Indeed, he already has the same number of goals this season that Ings got for the whole of 2014-15. Additionally, Vardy grabbed more goals/assists overall than Ings last season.

Under Rodgers, this would be a non-starter, but with Klopp at the helm, Vardy is worth a punt...for the right price. Granted, there's always the risk of small club mentality getting in the way of success at Anfield, but I'd argue that'll be less of a problem under Liverpool's new boss.

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Author: Jaimie K


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