Liverpool Transfer News: Thomas Ince Could Lift Reds into Top-4 Race

Aidan ReynoldsContributor IIIJanuary 4, 2013

Thomas Ince could bolster the Liverpool attack and allow them to threaten once more.
Thomas Ince could bolster the Liverpool attack and allow them to threaten once more.Clive Brunskill/Getty Images

Liverpool need goals, and The Daily Mirror reports Thomas Ince could be the man to supply them. Daniel Sturridge may have been brought in to fulfill that role, but Ince is a more dynamic player who would link with Luis Suarez and establish Liverpool’s attack as something to be feared.

Suarez cannot be expected to carry the attack for the season, regardless of how well Sturridge settles in; in order to assert themselves on the top four, Liverpool and Brendan Rodgers must push the transfer of Ince through.

There has been a lot of false dawns already this year. Liverpool have won a couple of games and looked better, only to sink back into games that are all possession and no end result.

Premier League teams have become willing to let them keep the ball, as they know Liverpool are more likely to run out the clock than score.The Reds have scored six goals in their last two games, but Sunderland and QPR are not fearsome opponents, no matter what last week’s result at Chelsea might suggest.

Even though the recent run of goals implies Liverpool’s fortunes are on the up, four of the six scored were done so by Suarez. This sort of production is brilliant, but it cannot last forever. The Uruguayan needs support, and Ince could be that player.

A recent report from The Independent suggests that Rodgers could be willing to move Suarez from his current central role in order to accommodate Sturridge, which would obviously be of benefit to the new acquisition.

Suarez has the ability to succeed anywhere, but the feeling persists that he stands to lose more than Sturridge from this arrangement.

Bringing in Ince would change that.

Ince has 13 goals in 25 appearances for Blackpool, but also 10 assists. With Suarez moved to make room for Sturridge, Ince can turn provider and ensure that Liverpool’s leading scorer keeps getting chances to score.

Just as it shouldn’t be left to Suarez to score, it shouldn’t be left to Sturridge, either. The extra addition of Ince would give Rodgers a group of young, hungry players who have both potential and experience—as well as an eye for goal.

Bringing in Sturridge looked a little risky at first; it seemed that Suarez would be playing behind him as a classic No. 10, but with Ince in the team it suddenly makes more sense.

There is potential to rotate the players depending on form, competition and fixtures, that goes without saying, but the prospect of playing Ince, Sturridge and Suarez in a 4-3-3 is an exciting one for Liverpool. Rodgers is looking for a core group of players to carry the team back into discussion for the EPL title, which can be achieved with Ince, Sturridge and Suarez.

With Steven Gerrard pulling the strings from midfield—as well as Raheem Sterling attacking the wing and causing problems for defences—Rodgers would have the pieces in place for a dominant attacking force.

Ince has left Anfield once, but his performances for Blackpool showed that he should’ve been retained. Kenny Dalglish spent £20 million on Stewart Downing, but he has been something near worthless since arrival, so it’s about time Ince came back to claim his place.

British magazine talkSPORT ran a graphic that perfectly illustrates the way things are going for the two players. Downing already looks past his prime and struggling for any sort of form. It’s only a matter of time before he is forced out, whereas Ince is only getting better and more productive.

If Ince is brought back to Liverpool, the club may just follow that trajectory, too.