In all walks of life, when it’s obvious that you’re flush with cash, it’s always a little bit more difficult to bag yourself a bargain. It’s something that applies to football too, and Liverpool—who recouped a stratospheric £75 million from the sale of Luis Suarez—are finding that out over the course of this transfer window.
Brendan Rodgers has had to shell out big, big money to bring in his summer transfer targets, and if he wants to add Swansea City’s Wilfried Bony to his squad, he looks as though he may have to do the same once again.
That’s after Swans boss Gary Monk has insisted that Bony would be playing his football at the Liberty Stadium next season unless the club were to receive a stratospherically high transfer bid, per the South Wales Evening Post (h/t Sky Sports):
At the moment nobody has come in for Wilf and he is our player. But it can't drag on for the whole summer. We don't want one of those scenarios where it's going on right up until the last day.
It has to be made loud and clear what is happening at some point - but at the end of the day he is not for sale unless someone comes in with an astronomical offer, which is the same with every club around the world.
The Reds have been strongly linked with a move for the Ivory Coast forward, per Darren Lewis of the Mirror, and after the Anfield club’s pursuit of French striker Loic Remy failed, per Andy Hunter of The Guardian, expect Rodgers to move into the market for another front man.
Marrying an intimidating blend of poise and power, Bony took to the Premier League marvellously after his move to Swansea from Vitesse Arnhem last summer. The 25-year-old not only showcased a composed head in front of goal—netting 16 goals in England’s top flight, per WhoScored.com—but a well rounded style that sets him apart from plenty of forwards.
In 2014 in particular, Bony was hugely prolific for both club and country, as noted here by Who Scored?:
He also developed a patent for scoring big goals in his maiden Premier League campaign. Not only did Bony net at Anfield, Old Trafford, Goodison Park and the Emirates, but he scored at vital times for his team too, as noted here by Squawka:
Bony is a player that is indomitable in the air, extremely intelligent with the ball at his feet and as good as any forward in Europe with his back to goal. Stylistically, he is a wonderful foil for Swansea’s intricate attacking midfielders, and it’s only natural that they’d be desperate to keep hold of him, especially after loaning Michu to Napoli.
You suspect that if Liverpool were to stump up the cash required to take the Swansea man to Merseyside, then he’d be a roaring success at Anfield too. The Reds were scintillating in their attacking forays last season, and a major part of that was their variation in attack. With that in mind Bony’s brute strength and dynamic presence would provide Rodgers with yet another attacking dimension.
While some Liverpool supporters will be frustrated by the seemingly excessive amounts they are having to spend on new players, Swansea’s stance on this speculation is both admirable and wholly understandable. After all, Liverpool themselves refused to sell Suarez last summer after he was subject to a hyperbole of transfer interest and he was subsequently sensational the following season.
With Michu off to Italy and with the start of the Premier League season creeping up, Swansea will know how potentially detrimental it would be to offload such a key player. The Swans struggled for long parts of the last campaign, with the threat of relegation lingering throughout extended spells of the season. If they sell Bony now, dropping down to the Championship might be a lot more realistic a proposition.
As for Liverpool, while reports would seem to suggest that Rodgers is a big fan of Bony, expect the Anfield boss to turn his attentions elsewhere. Bony would bring plenty to the team as the Reds look to plot their way to both domestic and European success, but for a fee that’d surely be in excess of £20 million, Rodgers may feel that there is better value elsewhere on the continent.