Brendan Rodgers' shrewd business in the transfer market has transformed Liverpool into one of the Premier League's most exciting clubs across the last two seasons, but the Northern Irishman will waste his January kitty if he opts to sign Martin Montoya from Barcelona.
As reported by Liam Prenderville of Mirror Football, Montoya remains happy at the Camp Nou, despite La Blaugrana failing to offer him a new contract:
There is no hurry for me to sign a new deal. I am at the best club in the world and I learn each day from Dani Alves. I believe that the negotiations are on the way but without pressure.
Prenderville also claims Ian Ayre, Liverpool's managing director, has already flown out for talks.
While Anfield followers can expect Rodgers to strengthen across the current transfer window, the manager should address his squad's more pressing needs before sanctioning a deal for the talented 22-year-old.
Montoya's Frustrating Habits Won't Strengthen Liverpool
Montoya possesses decent dribbling skills, looks to break forward and shows relentless energy down the flank, but he is far from the complete package.
He has completed just 0.3 accurate crosses per appearance this season, according to WhoScored. The player's inaccurate delivery is often frustrating to watch, and when given room to express himself, the youngster often overthinks simple tasks.
Montoya does make plenty of tackles, averaging 3.4 per game across 11 La Liga and Champions League displays this campaign, but his positioning has the capacity to leave him chasing strikers who have drifted into space down his side.
It's fair to say Montoya would find it difficult to displace Glen Johnson from the first team, especially when the Englishman gathers a run of fitness and form together. Johnson has worked hard to largely eradicate the aforementioned frustrations from his game and is a potent weapon down Liverpool's right wing.
Signing Montoya would also suggest Martin Kelly isn't needed for back-up. This would be extremely disappointing for both the player and the fans, as the 23-year-old has the potential to become a star for Rodgers in the coming years.
Considering both Martin Skrtel and Kolo Toure have also appeared in the right-back position during the current campaign, it's fair to say Rodgers has enough depth to bypass Montoya's signing for something needed with greater intensity.
Reds' Midfield and Attack Need Bolstering
Many fans will have been surprised to see Jordan Henderson excel during Steven Gerrard's recent absence. Rodgers allows his players to romp across the pitch with creativity, and it has helped the previously maligned midfielder highlight why the club paid £20 million for him in 2011.
The club is stacked with creative options, but world-class strength-in-depth is lacking from particular positions.
If Luis Suarez was to become injured during Daniel Sturridge's spell on the sidelines, Rodgers only has the unproven reserves of Iago Aspas, Luis Alberto and Fabio Borini (who is currently on loan at Sunderland) to call upon.
While another prolific goalscorer is needed, Philippe Coutinho's extended spell on the sidelines already left Liverpool looking short of ideas earlier in the season. The Brazilian has an incredible natural talent for crafting opportunities, picking a decisive pass and skipping beyond stronger opponents with a fleet-footed turn.
His ability to consistently play successful through balls also maintains the speed of Liverpool's attack, per Squawka:
Most Completed Through Balls In Europe's Top 5 Leagues: Fabregas (17), Suarez (9), Coutinho (9), Xavi, Iniesta, D.Silva & Wilshere (All 8).— Squawka Football (@Squawka) January 7, 2014
Should Liverpool sign Martin Montoya this season?
Coutinho is an example of Rodgers' best type of business. The manager loves to develop incomplete talents by giving them opportunities, as we've seen with Coutinho, Henderson, Sturridge and Raheem Sterling.
While Montoya certainly falls into this category, his transfer doesn't suit Liverpool at this time.
Rodgers may fancy adding extra efficiency to the Barca right-back's growth, but as the Merseyside club continue to compete for Premier League and FA Cup glory, the former Swansea boss must prioritise the acquisition of individuals who will make an immediate impact.