Four Players Liverpool Should Sell/Loan and Their Replacements
There are a few words that come into my mind when I think about this season for Liverpool.
Player performances and questionable lineups have cost Liverpool some games that, on paper, should have been an easy win.
A list of clubs that have won—or drawn—against Liverpool come to mind: QPR, Sunderland, Wigan, Swansea and most recently, Fulham, drawing the ire of David Fairclough, who told LFC TV, "It was shocking. I can't remember a worse performance; it was awful...."
Even manager Kenny Dalglish admitted Liverpool's poor display in an interview with BBC saying, "The performance and the attitude was very poor and that's not like us."
I've compiled a list of four players that should be sent on loan or sold this season and their replacements that can hopefully propel the Reds to league success next season.
The 5'6" Merseyside-born midfielder has been somewhat of a liability this season.
Starting from the poor control that led to Manchester United scoring at Old Trafford, which they ultimately won 2-1, Liverpool's Luis Suarez providing the lone goal and Wayne Rooney scoring twice for the Red Devils.
Spearing has been caught time and time again dawdling on the ball.
Okay—he's made some "feisty tackles," but he's also made some poor decisions in tackling and passing.
Spearing is also on the short side for a defensive midfielder, standing at 5'6." He's tried to play quick one-two passes with Henderson and Gerrard and Downing, but he ultimately fails to provide quick and decisive passing that DMs should be able to do.
Let's take a look at the game against Fulham on May 1.
Spearing had an 87 percent passing rating in the first half. At the final whistle, he won just 50 percent of aerial duels and an attempt at goal. He likes to try and shoot from long range, but he hasn't scored in 50 games, as reported by Martin Tyler.
When he passes, there isn't enough weight to it, slowing down the play or having it intercepted.
I can say the same for Jonjo Shelvey and Andy Carroll—when Carroll played a weak and sloppy pass against Bolton, Craig Bellamy chastised him for it on the pitch and Carroll played stronger passes.
He's not a defensive tactician nor is he intimidating. I think Spearing should be replaced for someone with a higher calibre. To me, Spearing is not Liverpool quality.
He's scored against AC Milan in January (his only goal so far) and has taken 33 shots out of the 26 games he's appeared in. He has also proved himself to be a good free-kick taker, with his goal coming from about 30 yards out, something Spearing won't ever be able to do.
He used to be the rock that defined our defense, but as of late, his age is showing. His pace, something that has always been a problem, stands out as one of the key things Liverpool needs to replace.
Carragher, don't get me wrong here, was a fantastic player.
In 2012, however, he is definitely way over his prime. His error-prone style, his conduct on the pitch (a reason why Arbeloa left the team) and his own goals count leaves much to be changed in the Liverpool defensive lineup.
Pacey footballers like Theo Walcott or Victor Moses or Peter Odemwingie, Gabby Abonglahor, Aaron Lennon and so on, can exploit Carra's slowness and his tendency to over commit himself and foul the player.
The fouls have resulted in three yellow cards this season, but 57 yellows and two red cards since the 2000-01 season.
I do concede that his two red cards are a testament to his professionalism, but Carra, now 34 years old, should be phased out of the senior squad.
On second thought, instead of offloading Carragher, placing him into the backroom as a staff member might consolidate Carra's history at Liverpool. A one-club man, like fellow Liverpudlian Steven Gerrard, Carra has made 482 appearances for the Reds.
A fast defender who isn't afraid to sacrifice his body for the team like Carra–Kyriakos Papadopoulos might fit the bill.
Of course, with Papadopoulos in the Olympics squad, his stock is surely going to rise, and might be too expensive for Liverpool.
I'm not saying young Jon Flanagan should be sold. He should be loaned out to a championship team like Leicester City, joining former Reds Paul Konchesky.
John Pantsil has recently terminated his contract with the Foxes, which may give Flanagan a shot in the first squad.
Flanagan, because of his young age, is prone to sloppy passes, but as we've seen him play against Manchester City, his debut for the senior squad, the boy can tackle.
His positioning at times might be questionable, but with enough minutes on the pitch, he will progress into a great defensive player for the next generation of Liverpool players.
Dalglish commented on Flanagan:
The young boy is not bad. For us that is really encouraging as well because it is a reflection of the work that is being done at the academy and if we have a strong academy it can only benefit us for years to come.
And not bad he is.
Except for that terrible back pass that led to Doni's red card...
There's a fair share of Charlie Adam detractors out there. They claim he's not the right fit at Liverpool, and to an extent, they're right.
The former Blackpool captain was to create plays and slice the air with his corner kicks at Liverpool, but the Scotsman has yet to give a scintillating performance as he did with the once high-flying Seasiders.
Adam, unfortunately, is out for the remainder of the season with a torn ACL.
He isn't the best tackler on the pitch, racking up five yellows and one red card.
I have to say though, Adam, when he is on form and focused, can pass the ball and thread it through defenders like hot knife through butter.
His vision, his corners and free kicks made him a target and eventual player for Liverpool. Unfortunately, he hasn't been able to replicate the stretch of form he had with Blackpool.
Charlie Adam is probably going to stay with the Reds for next season. However, if he does get sold for his sub-par performances, we would be in need of a creative midfielder who can pass the ball like he could.
Then again, it is his first season with Liverpool...
According to Sports360:
Hernanes is a creative minded player and dead-ball specialist with the ability to play with both feet. His range and accuracy of passing has made him the creative fulcrum of a Lazio team that find themselves third in the Serie A table, occupying the final Champions League place two points ahead of Napoli.