Liverpool Transfer Rumors: Fernando Llorente a Better Option Than Andy Carroll

Nicholas Goss@@NicholasGoss35Correspondent IAugust 30, 2012

BUCHAREST, ROMANIA - MAY 08:  Fernando Llorente of Athletic Bilbao gestures during the Athletic Bilbao training session ahead of the UEFA Europa League Final between Atletico Madrid and Athletic Bilbao at the National Arena on May 8, 2012 in Bucharest, Romania.  (Photo by Alex Grimm/Getty Images)
Alex Grimm/Getty Images

Liverpool is reportedly interested in Athletic Bilbao striker Fernando Llorente, and the Spanish star would be a significant upgrade over disappointing striker Andy Carroll. According to The Sun:

LIVERPOOL want Athletic Bilbao striker Fernando Llorente — if they can sell Andy Carroll by tomorrow night.  

If Liverpool manager Brendan Rodgers can generate funds from selling or loaning Carroll, maybe Liverpool will step up its chase for Llorente before the transfer window closes on Friday.

However, after selling star defensive midfielder Javi Martinez to German club Bayern Munich, Bilbao could have fans getting very angry if Llorente leaves too. Selling your two best players in the last week of the transfer window without adequately replacing them is a massive risk for any club.

Carroll has appeared in Liverpool's two Premier League matches this season as a substitute but does not appear to have an important role in the attack at the moment.

Llorente can score goals in several different ways, and like Carroll, he can be tough to defend in the air.

Not being able to play in the Champions League could be one reason for Llorente to think twice about making a move to Liverpool. He has never played in Europe's top club tournament, and at 27 years of age, his time to star on a major club in the Champions League is running out.

If no club in the Champions League is willing to offer him the role he desires, going to Liverpool would be a better option than staying with Bilbao.

Llorente would flourish in Rodgers' attacking style, and if Liverpool did bring him to Anfield, the club would be sending a positive message to the fans. The Spanish striker would be a huge upgrade over Carroll.


Nicholas Goss is a Featured Columnist at Bleacher Report. Follow him on Twitter.