Liverpool have reportedly made an offer for Paris Saint-Germain striker Edinson Cavani, and while the Reds would have to assess the value of a transfer at this stage of the summer, his signature would conclude what has been a very productive few weeks for the Reds.
Cavani's agent Claudio Annelluci told El Telegrafo (h/t David Maddock of the Daily Mirror) that the Reds were among the clubs who put an offer on the table for his client:
There was much interest in the player during the past six months. I can confirm that Cavani has heard proposals from Liverpool and Arsenal. He would love to play in England, but has not yet made a final decision. He is not interested in money and fame, he just wants to be happy playing football.
Liverpool have been very active in the summer transfer window so far, but the one thing still lacking is the kind of splash signing that makes headlines all around the world. It comes with being a top club—the Reds need to profile themselves as a destination for top talent.
Among the fans, opinions seem divided on Cavani, and a lot of it likely has to do with his showings against Chelsea in the UEFA Champions League last season. It's important to note people witnessed a striker low on confidence in that match, however, and the same goes for his performance at the 2014 World Cup.
French champions PSG primarily use Cavani as a winger, which simply isn't his game. The Uruguay international's strongest assets are his athleticism, finishing and ability in the air. With Zlatan Ibrahimovic already occupying the central role for Les Parisiens, Cavani is forced to be someone he's not.
It's why his 2013-14 season was the worst of his career statistically, with 16 goals in 30 Ligue 1 appearances, per WhoScored.com. Mind you, that's still an excellent return for a striker playing out of position and as a secondary scoring option.
There's a reason PSG paid big money to bring him to the French capital in 2013. Cavani was an incredibly consistent scorer in Serie A with Napoli, scoring more than 20 goals in every season he suited up for the Partenopei.
If used correctly and with the confidence of consistent playing time under his belt, the 27-year-old is a top-class striker. And those normally don't come cheap. PSG aren't exactly strapped for cash, but with Financial Fair Play regulations as they are, Les Bleus could move Cavani for a fee smaller than the one they paid 12 months ago.
According to Maddock, that fee was £53 million. As crazy as the 2014 summer transfer window has been, that would simply be too much for a striker who isn't even the first choice at the position for his current club.
Value is the key here. Signing Cavani wouldn't just solidify the club's attacking unit—adding a star player would send a clear message to the world that Anfield once again is a destination for the finest talent in all of football.
Maddock recently wrote a piece for the Mirror addressing the club's interest in top talent in which he agreed that it's the kind of big signing the Reds need:
The Reds are thinking big. Rodgers has done well in the transfer market, with the arrival of Moreno he will have signed the three defenders he always wanted – and needed - and in Adam Lallana, Lazar Markovic and Emre Can, he has three new midfielders of immense promise. ...
What the moves for Cavani and Falcao suggest though, is that Liverpool are still based firmly in the present. They know how important it is to qualify for NEXT season's Champions' League. ...
But if the Reds can add a proven, top level striker, then they will be a force to be reckoned with. In fact, for all the impressive business they have performed so far, you would suggest they need to make just one more signing. And it is a huge one for their future.
Rodgers knows that, and it is clear he is trying desperately to make it happen. The money involved makes that difficult, of course, but if they can pull it off, then with the squad they now have, Liverpool will be no Spurs when the new season comes around.
Adding Cavani means stealing him from under the nose of several Premier League rivals reportedly interested in his services. It doesn't just help the Reds on the pitch—it sends a very clear signal to the rest of the football world that last season wasn't some fluke.
Liverpool aren't a small club, but adding only young talent who could pay dividends in a few years' time is a small-club mentality. With the proceeds from Champions League qualification and the Luiz Suarez sale, Brendan Rodgers has the finances needed to pull off a move like this.
Whether it's Cavani or another world-class player doesn't matter all that much at this point, but the Uruguayan seems to be the most readily available of the remaining transfer targets. The Reds need this marquee signing to end what has been one of the club's best summer windows in recent history.
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