Liverpool FC Manager Brendan Rogers is moving forward quickly in the transfer market to reload the side for the Anfield club. The Reds have already sold Uruguay bad boy Luis Suarez to Barcelona for a reported £70 million and are fast tracking a move to sign a replacement. Recent moves have already included signing the Southampton transfer duo of Rickie Lambert and Adam Lallana, as well as Emre Can from Bayer Leverkusan. With the Suarez transfer fee burning a hole in Rogers’ pocket, he is moving to add youth and quality talent.
As Rogers surveys the transfer terrain in his attempt to reload the Liverpool FC side, he appears to have several potential Suarez replacements as possibilities. One such possibility is Real Madrid striker Karim Benzema. Current reports indicate a possible price of £40 million for Benzema. Rogers believes Benzema will be available due to Real’s pursuit of Radamel Falcao. Benzema reportedly refused Real’s contract offer, leading to speculation regarding his availability for the Reds. After apparently losing to Arsenal in the race to sign striker Alexis Sanchez, Rogers is likely going to push hard to lock down Benzema as a consolation prize.
Another potential striker transfer on Rogers’ radar screen is reported to be Porto’s Jackson Martinez, fresh off a successful stint on the Colombian national team in the FIFA World Cup. Finally, Divock Origi, the Belgian striker, is reported to be in Liverpool for advanced talks in an effort to secure his transfer. With the availability of transfer funds and the need for a Suarez replacement, the Reds are currently linked to a number of quality strikers rumored to desire a move, including Wilfried Bony.
Liverpool already submitted a £20 million bid for Southampton central defender Dejan Lovren. Although nothing has been signed, the 25-year-old Croatian is angry with his club because they said nothing to him about the Reds’ offer. He says he does not want to play with a club lacking in ambition. The losses of Lambert and Lallana to Liverpool and Luke Shaw to Manchester United stung the defender. In all likelihood, he will soon line up at Anfield. Also in the mix to bolster the defense for the Reds is Swansea City’s Ben Davies.
Brendan Rogers is also reported to have zeroed in on Benfica wing Lazar Markovic. A £19.8 million transfer is reported to be in the works for the 20-year-old Serbian. Markovic is supposed to be undergoing a medical evaluation today in order to finalize the deal. Markovic is viewed as having star level talent coupled with a questionable work ethic. Rogers will need to assure himself of the young Serb’s ambitions before completing any transfer.
Rogers has a tough task replacing a talent such as Luis Suarez. Further complicating the matter, other teams know the Liverpool FC has a large stash of cash for the transfer market reload as they move forward. Although better to have the resources on hand than not, the current clubs holding the rights to Rogers’ targets can see him coming and will want a sizable return. Keeping a number of transfer rumors alive likely works to Liverpool’s advantage as they make their final decisions.
Commentary by William Costolo