Liverpool FC Transfer Rumours: 12 January Targets for Kenny Dalglish
Andy Carroll and Stewart Downing have both have failed to live up to their respective transfer fees of £35 million and £18 million.
I don't know what spiel Mike Ashley gave to John W. Henry, Tom Werner and Damien Comolli, but it didn't include Carroll's tendency to drink and the fact he was the manifestation of English hype and short-term form.
Several years ago, Amr Zaki was the in-form forward in the Premier League, but you don't buy him for £35 million in the next transfer window.
January approaches and here are 12 January targets for Kenny Dalglish.
Liverpool need to reinforce in three positions: forward, winger and defensive midfielder.
We'll break it up into four different transfer types: luxury, economically efficient, youth and realistic.
Luxury Forward: Edinson Cavani (Napoli)
I don't have an issue with Liverpool scouts not taking a chance with Edinson Cavani when he at Danubio, but why didn't they insist the club sign the Uruguayan when he was at Palermo?
After the 2010-11 season with Napoli, all hopes of signing Cavani for a reasonable price were dashed.
It wasn't just the 33 goals in 47 games; he either rescued or won games for Napoli six times in the final five minutes.
£40 million should be enough to sign Cavani, but you're dealing with such outrageous numbers that it's more beneficial for Liverpool to find a more economically efficient option.
You can always dream about Luis Suárez and Cavani wreaking havoc.
Economically Efficient Forward: Artjoms Rudņevs (Lech Poznań)
When you're projecting the stock of players who dominate in lesser competition, you want to know if they can transition into a stronger competition.
Rudņevs is scoring for fun this season—21 goals in 19 games.
Last year, Lech Poznań sold Robert Lewandowski for £4.2 million to Borussia Dortmund.
Lewandowski has since proven he is worth at least triple that transfer fee.
Rudņevs could be Liverpool's version of Ole Gunnar Solskjær.
Youth Forward: Luuk De Jong (Twente)
You can see the comparisons of Robin van Persie when you watch 21-year-old Dutch forward Luuk De Jong.
There was a period this season when De Jong scored headed goals in four consecutive games.
I watched him in a 3-1 loss against Benfica and a 2-2 draw against PSV Eindhoven and he didn't play well.
It's just two games and not enough to definitively come to a conclusion.
Realistic Forward: Lukas Podolski (Köln)
Lukas Podolski is not only the most realistic transfer option, but also the safest.
95 international appearances for Germany is enough of a reason to bank on him.
Kenny Dalglish has the option of playing him out wide—as Joachim Löw does for Germany—or as a forward.
You might be wondering why he failed at Bayern Munich. His own teammate, Mark van Bommel, injuring Podolski leaving him on the sidelines wasn't a good introduction.
The next season, he played bit-part minutes off the bench whilst watching Luca Toni score 39 goals in 46 games.
Luxury Winger: Mathieu Valbuena (Marseille)
The video showcases his shooting prowess, but it doesn't show his dribbling ability, which is more impressive.
Mathieu Valbuena ranks up there as one of the best dribblers in world football and it confuses me to no end as to how he is still playing in Ligue 1.
Economically Efficient Winger: Pablo Armero (Udinese)
Pablo Armero is what you call a one-trick pony.
Pace, pace and more pace.
He kicks the ball past the full-back and he runs.
He's effective, but can he replicate that against teams who do not play a high line?
Arsenal supporters will remember him cutting the entire defence open only to fail to score.
£5 million would be a bargain, £10 million would be a bit steep, so an offer should be somewhere in between.
Youth Winger: Junior Hoilett (Blackburn Rovers)
21-year-old Junior Hoilett has been surprisingly good.
Early this year, the young winger was influential in Blackburn Rovers' 3-1 win over Liverpool.
Perhaps it was his choice to not sign an extension, or maybe Rovers couldn't afford to give him a just contract upgrade, because he is out of contract in six months.
Realistic Winger: Miloš Krasić (Juventus)
One of Juventus' most important players last season, he has since been relegated to a nothing player in the Turin club's excellent start to the season.
It's odd someone of his talent can't even get regular minutes off the bench.
Major red flag.
So it might be in Liverpool's best interests to let Chelsea buy Krasić, because there is a high bust probability with the Serbian.
Luxury Defensive Midfielder: Yann M'Vila (Rennes)
Yann M'Vila has no noticeable weakness.
Strong tackler, efficient passer, underrated in providing through balls, good in the air and physically impressive.
Rennes know they have a goldmine with M'Vila and he will not come cheap.
At least £20 million.
Economically Efficient Defensive Midfielder: Javad Nekounam (Osasuna)
Manuel Queimadelos Alonso/Getty Images
Javad Nekounam is arguably the best Asian footballer this season.
So consistent and so reliable.
He has a good physical presence, a knack for intercepting the ball and a high football IQ.
Shouldn't cost more than £5 million.
Youth Defensive Midfielder: Lewis Holtby (Schalke)
It was a surprise to me seeing Lewis Holtby play deeper for Schalke because he raised a lot of eyebrows with his performances as an attacking midfielder for Mainz.
Holtby has demonstrated great defensive contributions with Schalke. Combine that facet with his attacking ability and he is one to watch out for.
His father is English and he is an Everton fan, so that may be an issue.
Then again, Jamie Carragher was an Everton fan.
Realistic Defensive Midfielder: Sulley Muntari (Inter Milan)
Sulley Muntari's contract at Inter Milan ends in six months time. He's on the outside looking in, contemplating about a move away and he loves tackling.
He played well for Sunderland and he will be a handy squad player for Liverpool.
Lucas isn't likely to feel threatened by Muntari's presence, yet at the same time, Muntari can conjure up some selfless performances.
People don't talk about his ability to muscle past two or three players before offloading the ball.
Michael Regan/Getty Images
Which of these 12 players do you want most at Liverpool?
If a player you want isn't on this list, then comment below and give a reason why Liverpool should sign him.
Will Liverpool make the top four?
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