Liverpool are reportedly leading the race to sign Leicester City striker Jamie Vardy in a £25 million deal, with the Reds’ current star forward, Daniel Sturridge, warned about his spot at the club.
According to Paul Hetherington of the Daily Star Sunday, Liverpool are the “most likely” suitors for the England striker, who has been in blistering form this season.
The piece stated the Reds see Vardy as a “modern-day Ian Rush” and quoted a source claiming that Vardy is the “right fit” for the style manager Jurgen Klopp seeks to play.
Although it’s been a remarkable campaign for the 29-year-old, as noted here by Squawka Football, his form has tailed off a little in recent weeks:
Riyad Mahrez and Jamie Vardy have both failed to score or assist a goal in five consecutive Premier League games. pic.twitter.com/NaYSqcOOsV— Squawka Football (@Squawka) January 16, 2016
If Vardy does come in, it could well be to replace Sturridge, who has had his long-term future at Anfield questioned by Liverpool legend Didi Hamann.
“There have to be doubts whether Sturridge can cope physically with the system that Klopp plays,” said the German, per Simon Mullock of the Sunday Mirror. "If he can’t, and if his fitness problems continue, then Klopp will not think twice about bringing someone else in. This is a big six months for Daniel. He has to get himself fit, play regularly and score goals.”
As noted by BreatheSport earlier this month, Sturridge has found it difficult to gain full fitness since he joined the Reds in 2013:
3 years ago Liverpool signed Sturridge for £12m. Since then: Games played: 81 Games missed through injury: 83 https://t.co/W6FYM90PSV— BreatheSport (@BreatheSport) January 2, 2016
Vardy would definitely suit the way Klopp wants Liverpool to play. His work rate is phenomenal, his movement exceptional and this season he’s added an end product to his game, with 15 goals and three assists already this term.
Sturridge’s perpetual struggle for full fitness is growing tiresome. At his best he is one of the finest strikers in the Premier League, but it has gotten to a point where Liverpool will have to start planning for the future with the forward as a peripheral figure.