19 Dec 2015

Messi's Cousin to Liverpool? Klopp wants 'brilliant' £15m striker who broke Barcelona records

Liverpool are reportedly considering a January move for 'brilliant' Stoke City attacker Bojan Krkic, who has been linked with the Reds several times in the past.

Liverpool were last linked with Bojan during the January 2015 transfer window, and according to The Telegraph today:

* Liverpool, Manchester United, Chelsea are all 'tracking' Bojan, who has another two years left on his Stoke contract.

* The Reds will allegedly have to to spend a £15 million to lure Bojan to Anfield, and an official bid is 'expected' next month.

When asked today about Liverpool's interest, Stoke boss Mark Hughes told reporters:

"He [Bojan] is happy here, his people are happy too and we wouldn't encourage any interest in him."

Some info about Bojan:

* Lionel Messi's cousin, and was, for a long time, nicknamed the 'new Messi'.

* Holder of several Barcelona records, including: youngest player; youngest Champions League player; youngest ever goalscorer; most goals in a in a debut season (for a young player).

* 8 goals/2 assists in 31 games for Stoke (one every 219 minutes). This season: 3 goals/0 assists in 12 games (One every 294 mins).

* 2 cruciate ligament injuries in the last four years (Out for 6 months this year with the second ACL issue).

Perhaps I'm missing something here, but why would Liverpool want Bojan? His goals/assists record for Stoke is poor, especially this season, where he hasn't recorded a single assist in over 13 hours of football. Liverpool already have Adam Lallana to fulfill the role of 'attacking midfielder who rarely scores/creates goals', and he doesn't need a deputy.

Plus, enough with the physically small attackers already. Variety is needed, and to break down big, strong teams that park the bus, Liverpool (IMO) need at least one big, tall, strong winger/Number-10, for the following reasons:

* Oftentimes, it comes down to strength on the ball, and ability to produce game-changing contributions amid being hacked, kicked, and buffeted by the meatheads who play for the likes of West Brom, Stoke etc. Unfortunately, Liverpool have too many small, (comparatively) weak attackers, i.e. Coutinho, Firmino, Ibe, Lallana, and before them, Sterling, Markovic, Aspas etc.

* These players have talent, but sometimes, that isn't enough. Some games develop into a war of attrition, and when Coutinho, Lallana et al come up against a 6'3 rock who's about 30kg heavier, they'll often lose the battle/be muscled off the ball (and out of the game), and that's happened countless times over the years.

* There's no variety in Liverpool's attacking players; they're all the same, and until this changes, the team will continue to struggle against big, strong teams like Stoke, who unashamedly set out to physically stifle the opposition.

This is exactly why Liverpool desperately need a player (or two) like Andriy Yarmolenko. The guy is 6'2, and tough as nails. He doesn't get shoved off the ball as easily, and he's as robust and injury-free as Luis Suarez.

Yarmolenko is also a superb attacker, with an incredible goals/assists record (182 goals/assists in 283 games for Dynamo Kiev; Averages 25 goals/assists every season for the last 6 years).

Bojan is the same height/stature as Coutinho. Is he really going to make the difference on a freezing cold December day against the hackers and long-ball merchants of the Premier League? No chance.

Author: Jaimie K


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