Despite Brendan Rodgers' hunt for a "marquee signing," as noted by The Mirror's David Anderson, the aforementioned stars are unlikely to join up with a rapidly changing Reds squad. Dickenson provides the details:
Liverpool have money to spend after the £75million sale of Luis Suarez to Barcelona. And Rodgers has been linked with the likes of Marco Reus, Arturo Vidal and Paul Pogba. However, Express Sport understands the Reds will NOT be signing any of the coveted trio.
Will Liverpool ever win the Premier League under Brendan Rodgers?
Rodgers continues to strengthen his team in a critical summer for Liverpool. Rickie Lambert, Emre Can, Adam Lallana and Lazar Markovic have already joined the club, with Loic Remy and Javier Manquillo expected to make the switch soon, as per David Maddock of The Mirror, who says Rodgers is ready "to make at least two, and possibly three more signings."
Dickenson claims Rodgers "has ruled out rivalling Manchester United or Chelsea for a big-name midfielder this summer." The Northern Irish manager has his heart set on adding depth to his squad ahead of next season's Champions League quest but allegedly isn't willing to compete for one of the world's most renowned talents.
Vidal playing alongside Steven Gerrard would certainly throw up a mouthwatering partnership. The Chilean's destructive nature ensures he plays with no mercy, but his driving runs from deep would become a real feature of Liverpool's play. His arrival would allow Gerrard to sit around the halfway line, as we saw last year, with Vidal echoing the gut-busting forward jaunts the Liverpool captain used to produce on a regular basis.
Carlos Tevez, Vidal's teammate at Juventus, insists the Italian side should keep hold of their box-to-box midfielder, as per Italian paper La Gazzetta dello Sport (via Ben Gladwell of ESPN FC): "Vidal's phenomenal and a real champion. I hope he stays here because we can't afford to let our champions leave."
Pogba could also fulfill a key role in Liverpool's midfield, but the ex-Manchester United player's reported fee of £60 million, via Daniel Taylor of The Guardian, would almost certainly price Rodgers out of a move.
Reus possesses the fast-paced, attacking instincts the boss looks to instill in his players, but the versatile German is going nowhere, according to Jurgen Klopp. The Borussia Dortmund manager dismissed Reus' exit while also discussing the possible transfer of Mats Hummels, as per Bundesliga specialist Clark Whitney:
Klopp says Hummels & Reus will stay at BVB: "& if papers also say €20m? Hah! When papers mention such figures you know it's garbage anyway."— Clark Whitney (@Mr_Bundesliga) July 21, 2014
Having missed out on Alexis Sanchez, Rodgers is certainly taking on the right approach in replacing Suarez. The Uruguayan's elusive style of play and prolific nature cannot be replicated—although Sanchez represents a similar alternative—meaning Rodgers is aiming to make up for the player's loss through multiple transfers.
Lambert offers Liverpool a target-man option, while Lallana's arrival provides a creative force behind the striker. Markovic's pace will be an asset down the wings, allowing Rodgers to experiment with the positioning of Philippe Coutinho and Raheem Sterling. Can's ridiculous versatility—he can play in central midfield or anywhere down the left side—ensures Liverpool have quality cover across the board.
"Our signings are strategic signings," Rodgers said, per Dickenson. "They are not just names. They all fit into the purpose of the team, but of course we want them to make a contribution."
Reus, Vidal and Pogba certainly could have made a contribution, but the trio's price tags and the interest of other clubs makes any negotiations difficult. Liverpool may need to sustain last season's second-place success before targeting such individuals, as Champions League football is surely important to each.
Rodgers will be encouraged by his team's link to the aforementioned stars. Just one year ago, it would have been inconceivable to imagine such stars plying their trade at Anfield, which has its intimidation factor back after Liverpool deployed an exciting brand of attacking football last season.
Things are moving in the right direction, and while Rodgers is expected to continue spending, a potential club-record fee looks off the cards.