Transfer Latest: 10 Players Liverpool Should Buy, but Probably Won't
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Hey, I'm Neil Harper and this is my first article for Bleacher Report (hurrah!) and for this article, I'm going to delve into some players Liverpool should buy but probably won't, because, well, it's Liverpool and there always seems to be someone they miss out who would have added depth to the squad.
Although this list could be boiled down to simply any left-back or striker who isn't Carlton Cole, I will try to give a little more to the debate, some of which you may agree with and some which you might not.
So with that, if there is anyone else you feel should be on this list, or otherwise, please comment!
Without further ranting, let's start.
1. Brad Friedel
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Friedel is more of a "should've bought," but the point still stands: his contract at Villa had expired and, despite being 40 years old, he still managed to be one of the top keepers in the league. With what is probably his last season in football before retirement, a return to Liverpool wouldn't have been that far-fetched.
Friedel would have been a fantastic No. 2 to Pepe Reina, excellent with the young and upcoming keepers at Liverpool and, if Reina did get injured, he would have been a keeper Liverpool could rely on—unlike Brad Jones, who by the end of the season had been replaced as No. 2 by Péter Gulácsi who had been on loan to League One teams for the best part of the season.
However, Friedel ended up being signed by Spurs early on in the transfer window—damn you, Redknapp!
2. Gary Cahill
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Any list involving transfer targets for the top five or six teams in the Premiership will include the Bolton defender, and it's not really surprising why because Cahill is a very good centre-back, both in defence and attack which would fit in well with Liverpool's current defence.
However, at the moment, Liverpool are not in need of a central defender, much as it pains me to say. Although, Jamie Carragher only seems to be getting better, and although Dan Agger is a bit injury-prone, he's still a solid centre-back and almost unbeatable at his best.
Liverpool have a good setup at the back, and even though both Skrtel (rejected Batman villain) and Kyrgiakos (pirate) can be a bit shaky at times, they are good players.
Unfortunate as it may be, Cahill will most likely end up at Arsenal and come back to haunt Liverpool for not buying him.
3. Keisuke Honda
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Keisuke Honda is still on my wish list for this season and I'm refusing to rule him out of a move to Anfield, mainly because, in my opinion, he's one of the best wingers outside of the Premiership.
I know that this statement won't last long because someone will snap him up and it'll be a steal, and I just hope that team is Liverpool. Honda is one of the best all-round wingers around, fast, good ability on and off the ball and fantastic set-piece taker. I am honestly surprised he wasn't bought after the World Cup, but hey, the world was far too busy in the Cesc Fabregas non-transfer that was somehow newsworthy every day.
I digress—the point is, Honda is a great player, and if it wasn't for the signings of two equally good wingers, Stewart Downing and Jordan Henderson, I'd see this as a must-buy for Liverpool. Unfortunately, it's not to be.
4. Mario Gomez
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Another player who wowed during the last World Cup, and in January there was speculation that Gomez was joining Liverpool or Chelsea. However, Liverpool went for Andy Carroll who, although over-priced, still is a good buy in my view and Chelsea got Torres in return...yeah, I won't go into that.
But still, Gomez, who at the time was warming the bench for Bayern, was ready for a move to England, but it didn't materialise and he's still in Germany and I'm surprised I've not heard his name in the transfer rumor mill surrounding Liverpool or Man City who between them have been linked with everyone who has ever kicked a football.
Despite that, I think Gomez would do well in the Premiership—unlike many other Bundesliga strikers who have joined or may join the Premiership. I also still hold faith in him coming to Liverpool, who are still arguably in need of a striker, at some point in the future.
5. Alexander Kolarov
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Half-way through, and we're at the first left-back—shocking, I know. Kolarov has shown this season that he's able to play in England and, more importantly, in a defensive manner, when many (including myself) thought of him more as a wing-back. When Man City bought him at the beginning of last season, I wondered then: why hadn't Liverpool tried to capture him? Now, a year has passed and Liverpool are in dire need of a left-back and Kolarov could be seen as surplus to requirements at Man City.
Instead, Liverpool went for Paul Konchesky. Enough said.
The signing of Gael Clichy was one I was not expecting, especially seeing as they had three perfectly good left-backs at the time; then again, when has that stopped them? I think I counted eight defensive midfielders at City.
As I've said before, Liverpool are in need of a left-back and Kolarov wouldn't be too far of a stretch of an idea, but chances are against it. With City and Liverpool being rivals for the Champions League this season (yeah, I said it!) and Jerome Boateng leaving for Germany, Kolarov will most likely be staying put at City, hopefully still getting first-team opportunities.
6. Ryan Shawcross
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Liverpool do have a good setup at the back right now, however it could be greatly improved with the signing of the Stoke defender.
Young, British, defensive: three words that have described Liverpool's transfer signings thus far. I think Shawcross would fit in perfectly with the setup that Liverpool have, with him playing the Jamie Carragher role, which he is very much accustomed to at Stoke.
However, like I said before, breaking up the current defensive lineup isn't the best idea. With many youth players rising through the ranks, Shawcross would be a welcomed addition to the team, but an unneeded one at the moment. I wouldn't rule it out entirely though.
7. Emmaunel Adebayor
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I know it's a long shot, but come on—you'd love to see him in a Liverpool shirt. He'd always score against Arsenal and City. No?
Well, anyway, Manu (as he's affectionately known by Match of the Day) is a very good striker—how many other players get sent out on loan to Real Madrid (still does not make any sense to me)? Okay, he might not play every game, but he doesn't need to in order to be a great striker for Liverpool, and I'm certain he could score at least 10 goals a season, easy.
However, for the same reason as Kolarov, I heavily doubt he's about to make a move to Merseyside. I think he is set for Madrid now, or definitely a move from England, which I can't really argue with. Well, at least argue a bit less.
8. Leighton Baines
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No, stop! Don't go away!
Yes, Leighton Baines, as much as it pains me to say, and believe me it really does, is one of the best left-backs in the country at the moment, and is definitely one of the stars at Everton. It's just very unfortunate that he does play for Everton because Liverpool may have had a chance of buying him. However, even though there has been speculation of a move across Merseyside for Baines, that is all it will be: speculation.
There's no way David Moyes would let go of one of his best players that easily; it's just not in his nature. Especially to Liverpool, Moyes would never hear the end of it for the rest of his career and I don't think he's ready to be hated in the whole of Liverpool just yet.
Nope, I don't see it. Liverpool's search for a left-back will most likely take them abroad, and if you're reading this after they have bought someone from abroad, told ya' so.
9. Eden Hazard
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Again, a player who's been lost in transfer speculation. But yes, the main interest is from Liverpool and Man City at this point—surprise, surprise.
But why not? When Liverpool played Lille the season before last, Hazard was the best player on the pitch and he was 19 years old at the time. How nobody has bought him since is beyond me, and a move to Liverpool would be a fantastic buy in my view.
This would be a good buy mainly because Hazard is extremely versatile, much like Luis Suarez at the moment. Although he's not going to get much game time with the amount of midfielders and strikers Liverpool have at the moment, I still think he'd be a great buy.
And now on to my last pick...
10. Emile Heskey
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No, not really—I just wanted an excuse to put up a picture of him.
10. Gareth Bale
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This one is serious, although I'm not sure why. We all know Bale's ability has impressed this season, and probably made him one of the most sought-after players by the best in the world. However, we also know Harry Redknapp won't be selling him this season and, of course, why would he? Spurs aren't going to stay in Europe by selling their best players.
I could go on for a while about Bale being the best left-sided player in the Premiership currently and how it could seriously help Liverpool's quest for a Champions League place this term, but even I think Bale is out of reach at the moment—not to Liverpool, not to Real Madrid or anyone else for that matter.
And They All Lived Happily Ever After
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So there we go. If there is anything you agree/disagree with, or feel like adding to the list, feel very free to leave a comment below. Thanks a lot for reading and I'll be back writing more soon I hope.
May the Heskey be with you.