Liverpool move into the final week of the transfer market without having significantly added to their squad since early July, with their four quickfire signings of Simon Mignolet, Kolo Toure, Luis Alberto and Iago Aspas their only permanent deals so far.
Aly Cissokho came in on loan for the season, but manager Brendan Rodgers remains hopeful of finding more talent to complement his squad for the coming season—and it is looking as though Liverpool will have to have a strong deadline day if that is now to happen.
As that day approaches, there are several scenarios which seem possible to pan out for the Reds.
Scenario 1: No Changes
Likely the most unwanted possibility for most Reds fans, it does however seem entirely possible that Liverpool see out the last week of the transfer market without making any more captures or offloading any more present players.
Oussama Assaidi, Dani Pacheco and perhaps one or two others were expected to leave this summer. Their futures are still up in the air, though they seem unlikely to feature for Liverpool this season.
Likewise, the manager has plans of bringing in at least one, if not more, signings—but he has been hindered by being unable to attract the likes of Diego Costa or Henrikh Mkhitaryan this summer, and that could easily signal the end of the arrivals.
But on the plus side, this scenario would see Luis Suarez remain at Anfield.
Scenario 2: Rodgers Gets the Attacker He Wants
The first and most pertinent question for this scenario is this: Who exactly is that attacker now? It seems clear that Rodgers wants a left-sided forward to allow Philippe Coutinho to play centrally more often, but the Reds are at least three or four names down their shortlist by this point.
Victor Moses is the latest name in the frame, linked with a loan move by Neil Ashton of the Daily Mail, while social network Twitter has gone into overdrive with fans and journalists alike speculating on which wide attackers could be good fits.
Liverpool apparently have money to spend, judging by the £30 million chase of Willian, but the recruitment team have yet to convince a top target for that role to move to Anfield this summer. It is debatable whether they can find another name who fits before next week.
On the other hand, if Rodgers does get his man, an attacking quartet of Coutinho, Player X, Suarez and Daniel Sturridge is a mouthwatering prospect for the fans.
Scenario 3: Real Back in for Suarez
After a bitterly wretched summer-long saga involving too many public quotes from all parties, it had seemed as though Liverpool's demands that the Uruguayan forward stay at the club were to be accepted—but now Javier Matallanas from AS (in Spanish) reports the move is back on.
If it happens, it's unlikely Liverpool will have time or inclination to reinvest those massive funds—surely in excess of £50 million—before the transfer window closes, but it could certainly make for an interesting January.
Scenario 4: 2 Late Swoops and an Exit?
Maybe, just maybe, this deadline day will turn out a little better for Liverpool than the same time last year, when a failed bid for Clint Dempsey was seen as disastrous for the club.
Rodgers wants a wide forward, and whether that name eventually turns out to be Andriy Yarmolenko, Iker Muniain, Victor Moses or someone else, there remains a good chance that the Reds will lure somebody in.
Elsewhere, there is certainly plenty of scope for Liverpool to delve further into the market and bring in a new central defender, with Sebastian Coates out injured for the long term and doubts continuing to surround Martin Skrtel's future.
If Rodgers has cash left to spare, this will likely be the area he targets to strengthen further. He wants to add backup for Kolo Toure and Daniel Agger and allow Andre Wisdom to head out on loan. It would also likely free up Skrtel to depart the club on a more permanent basis—and, the manager will hope, that would be the only departure from the first-team scene, with Suarez remaining at the club for the coming season.