How Signing Victor Moses on Loan Will Aid Liverpool Attack

Karl MatchettFeatured ColumnistSeptember 12, 2013

As part of a triple-swoop completed early-on during transfer deadline day, Brendan Rodgers secured the signing of Chelsea and Nigeria forward Victor Moses on loan.

Only a year ago heralded as one of the brighter young homegrown talents of the Premier League outside of the biggest five or six teams, Moses has only spent one season at Stamford Bridge, so far, after moving from Wigan Athletic for around £9 million.

Surrounded by expensive star names from around the globe, it was perhaps unsurprising that Moses found game time hard to come by at some points during the season, while he also missed several games while at the Africa Cup of Nations.

During that tournament, of course, he played a huge part in Nigeria winning. After scoring twice in the group stage, he claimed vital assists in the semifinal and the final.

Moses is clearly a capable player, and yet, perhaps because he played for Wigan or perhaps because he is on loan, there appears to be a nagging suspicion that Liverpool have signed a player who cannot contribute adequately to their attack.

In truth, there should be no such worries over the 22-year-old.

Moses brings a lot of qualities to the Liverpool front line which have been needed for some time. Unlike many on the squad, who prefer to play just off the defensive line and edging toward midfield, Moses is a direct attacker who prefers to get the ball as close to goal as possible.

This directness, coupled with his pace and power—both of which he has in abundance—already makes him a refreshing option to consider, instead of the more technical approach and deft touches of Iago Aspas, for example.

Obviously, the position for which Brendan Rodgers has Moses in mind is the left side of the attack, but he is far from limited in the roles he can perform.

Indeed, for Wigan he operated as a centre-forward at times, while his time at Chelsea saw some of his best performances come from the right flank.

If supporters consider the combination of Philippe Coutinho behind Daniel Sturridge to be the Reds' best, or most likely, option from central areas of attack, then having Luis Suarez and Moses playing from the flanks allows for an awful lot of interchangeability and movement.

Liverpool already have a fluid front quartet, but the return from suspension of Suarez and Moses' eventual introduction to the team should take that up another level.

Liverpool's goal threat will also rise.

Suarez top-scored last season and Moses has already shown he can score goals, hitting four in six games in Chelsea's successful Europa League run last term and netting 10 goals in all, from 2482 minutes of play.

A goal every 250 minutes or so in all competitions is favourably comparable to the likes of attacking midfielders Eden Hazard (347 mins), Santi Cazorla (353 mins) or Samir Nasri (492 mins).

Of course, those players feature more regularly and for longer periods each game than Moses often managed for Chelsea, but it certainly indicates he can bring goals to the Reds' attack if he is given the chance on a regular basis.

An apparent fear of a negative aspect of Moses' loan deal is that he may hinder the game time of the likes of Raheem Sterling and Jordon Ibe, but there is no real reason to suspect that they will not feature a reasonable amount.

All three of them can play in multiple positions and share similar traits, so even if they do not start in the same game, one can replace another without problems.

Rodgers is well aware of how often his younger players need to be used, and in the case of Moses not being a permanent Liverpool player, he can be utilised exactly as the manager wishes for the year without too much long-term attention being diverted his way.

If Sterling, for example, particularly pushes on over the second half of the season, there is no downside to taking Moses out of the team on a more regular basis.

Sterling played so much football early on last year that he was unable to figure for almost the whole of the second half of the season.

More spread-out performances and game time will enable him to play a role in the whole of Liverpool's 2013-14 campaign, which will benefit the player far greater right now—especially if any kind of success or recognition is forthcoming by the end of it—than playing 90 minutes after 90 minutes, once again, under pressure to perform from the start of the season.

Moses has a year to show he is capable of playing a significant part for an ambitious, attack-minded and exciting Premier League club toward the top end of the table.

The early-season form of the Reds, even without Suarez, has shown him that he'll have a job on his hands to get into the team to start with. If the Nigerian attacker then shows his best form and performs well enough to warrant staying in the team, it can only benefit Liverpool.

Better attacking play, more creativity and more of a goal threat will be required as the season goes on, and for a team already sitting top of the table, there's still an awful lot more to look forward to.