What has been a very good summer for Liverpool continued with the addition of Aly Cissokho on a one-year loan deal.
The Guardian's Andy Hunter reported the Reds brought in the 25-year-old left-back after missing out on Granada's Guilherme Siqueira, and will make the move official next week.
This move shouldn't come as a huge shock to supporters, as Cissokho was been a target for at least the last couple of months. Graeme Yorke of the Daily Mail reported in July that Liverpool was looking to loan the player in, with a view to a permanent move at the end of the season.
Hunter didn't report of any possible future fee, but it wouldn't be a surprise to hear of such a deal when the club officially confirms the move in the coming days.
Given that the first match of the season is today, the earliest Cissokho could possibly suit up for the club is on August 24, when the Reds travel to Villa Park to take on Aston Villa.
The club confirmed on Twitter the squad numbers for the Stoke City match.
Should this move get finalized, manager Brendan Rodgers and Liverpool have made an intelligent move by bringing in the Valencia left-back, especially on a one-year loan.
Left-back is a problem area for the club which needed to be addressed at some point this summer.
Jose Enrique played well last season and returned to form after ending the 2011/12 season poorly. After him, though, the cupboard is pretty bare.
Daniel Agger and Glen Johnson can fill in at left-back, but their preferred positions are centre-back and right-back, respectively. Jack Robinson is still only 19 years old and turns 20 on September 1. He's also been loaned out to Blackpool, and they will hope to not have to recall him like they did with Jonjo Shelvey in 2011.
Even if Cissokho is the same level or marginally better than Enrique, he provides some much-needed depth in the position.
When he was at Lyon, the Frenchman showed a lot of promise. However, he seemed to regress a bit around 2011 or 2012. At Valencia, he returned a bit to his early Lyon form and got his career back on track.
Cissokho is a left-back who's very similar to Enrique. Both are skilled enough on the ball to work in Rodgers' system and they provide some width down the left. Cissokho probably has more speed and stamina than Enrique, but his long passing isn't as advanced as the Spaniard.
As a result, you have two left-backs who are similar enough that they won't throw off the balance in the squad when interchanged, but they have enough differences that they aren't simply like-for-like substitutions.
With Cissokho, there's a chance that he won't live up to the hype and is more Paul Konchesky than Jose Enrique. If that happens, because of this being a loan deal, the investment the club has made isn't all that significant.
After the season is over, Liverpool can simply let Cissokho return to Valencia and will have only had to pay his wages for a season and paid whatever the loan fee was.
On the other hand, if Cissokho plays well, the Reds will have the opportunity at the end of this season to sign an experienced left-back for what will likely be a reasonable fee. With Valencia's financial situation, they can't afford to hold out for a very high fee. They'll have to take whatever they can get.
Hopefully, this isn't the last signing of the season for Liverpool, as it would be beneficial if they could add a centre-back between now and September 2.
With Cissokho, though, the Reds have made a low-risk, medium-reward move. The player isn't going to turn into a world-class defender, but at the very least, he should be an upgrade on what they have.
Who wouldn't take a deal like that?
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