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Liverpool Transfer News: Latest on Mauro Icardi and Brendan Rodgers' Key Targets

MILAN, ITALY - APRIL 26:  Mauro Icardi of FC Inter Milan in action during the Serie A match between FC Internazionale Milano and SSC Napoli at San Siro Stadium on April 26, 2014 in Milan, Italy.  (Photo by Claudio Villa/Getty Images)
Claudio Villa/Getty Images
James DudkoFeatured ColumnistAugust 10, 2014

Liverpool manager Brendan Rodgers apparently hasn't forgotten about the glaring need to replace star striker Luis Suarez. The latest transfer rumours link the Anfield chief with two strikers, both of whom only joined their respective current clubs just one year ago.

However, that hasn't stopped Rodgers from believing he can bring either Inter Milan forward Mauro Icardi or Swansea City attacker Wilfried Bony to Merseyside this summer.

Here's a more in-depth look at these rumours:

 

Bony is Rodgers' Top Target

The rumours about signing Bony just don't go away. In fact, the latest reports indicate the powerhouse striker is now Rodgers' top target.

Bony continues to be linked with a move to Anfield.
Bony continues to be linked with a move to Anfield.Paul Thomas/Getty Images

That's according to Mirror reporter Alan Nixon. However, Nixon has also stated that not everyone at the club endorses Bony's talents:

The Kop boss has had the Swansea scoring sensation at the top of his wish list for weeks and still sees him as the best man for the job.

Bony is keen on making a move to Merseyside too – but the major obstacle is that the Anfield giants' ‘transfer committee’ are worried the 25-year-old is not worth his £19 million price-tag.

A difference of opinion like this one can be a common problem when a manager has to run transfer dealings through another layer of decision-makers. Yet despite the reservations, there's a lot to recommend Bony to Liverpool.

To start with, he offers different qualities to Suarez. That's important because replacing a mercurial talent like Suarez with a player boasting similar skills is going to be virtually impossible.

Few strikers in the game combine the controversial Uruguayan's intricacy, flair, scoring touch and creative instincts. Selling Suarez should prompt an attempt to freshen things up by Rodgers.

Liverpool need a different type of striker in the post-Suarez era.
Liverpool need a different type of striker in the post-Suarez era.Jamie McDonald/Getty Images

Bony would certainly do that. He's combative and strong in the air, while his link play is also excellent. The robust Ivory Coast striker can shield defenders and release forward runners with clever touches and sly passes.

That's an important consideration in the way Liverpool play. The Reds could treat Bony as a focal point. He would be a target man around whom pacy attackers Daniel Sturridge, Raheem Sterling and Philippe Coutinho could play.

That's not to say Bony wouldn't get his share of goals. He's a terrific header of the ball and a decisive finisher on the ground. The 25-year-old is also deceptively quick, a necessary trait in Liverpool's high-speed brand of attacking football.

The main doubt about this rumour concerns Bony only spending one season in the Premier League. Having plied his trade for Vitesse Arnhem then Swansea, Bony is relatively untested at the highest levels.

That may concern a club re-entering the UEFA Champions League this season.

 

Reds Need to Pay €30 Million for Icardi

If Rodgers really wants to make a statement in the post-Suarez era, he'll focus his attentions on the highly regarded Icardi. However, the cost of that statement will be €30 million.

That's the fee suggested by Italian outlet Tuttosport (h/t Mirror reporter Ben Burrows):

Liverpool will rival Monaco for Inter Milan hitman Mauro Icardi - but they will have to cough up big to do so.

The moneybags French side have even more cash at their disposal following James Rodriguez's sale and are intent on spending it.

The Reds themselves have cash to splash too and are keen on the fiery Argentine according to Tuttosport.

They suggest both clubs are ready to bid as much as €30 million for the 21-year-old before the window shuts.

News of Monaco's interest should be a concern. The Ligue 1 side have the resources to leave Liverpool trailing in this deal. Monaco will also have extra motivation as they bid to replace departed star James Rodriguez.

Icardi certainly has the pace and guile to be a difference-maker in the Liverpool attack. He would combine well with Sturridge to form a fleet-footed duo that would consistently stretch defences.

That sort of pace is what made Rodgers' team so dangerous last season.

Rodgers is still searching for a striker opponents will fear. The manager, who has worked well with young players such as Sterling and Jon Flanagan since arriving at Liverpool, may believe he can develop Icardi into that kind of striker.

Liverpool haven't made a major statement up front since letting go of Suarez. Rodgers has so far only added ex-Southampton veteran Rickie Lambert.

But the Reds still need a true marquee striker. While it's easy to be wary about signing any players who have only been at a club for a year, both Icardi and Bony remain intriguing targets.

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