Liverpool FC: Who Should Start on the Wings for Liverpool This Season?August 4, 2012
Liverpool's so called wing 'problem' has been a common talking point during each and every transfer window. Last year, Stewart Downing was brought in. Last season, Downing disappointed.
It's a bit of a common theme. Pick Cole, Babel, Downing, Maxi or whoever else. No successful winger has been signed in the last couple of seasons.
So how do you rectify such a lingering problem?
You could sign players. Gaston Ramirez and Vargas have been linked to the reds, and either or both seem like they would get the job done. However the absence of Champions League football severely limits the chances of signing a proven winger.
So will Rodgers sign no one?
If that is the case, Liverpool have a choice of Downing, Cole, Henderson (cough), Bellamy or youth.
Let's briefly run down the list.
Downing isn't as bad as some make him out to be and is certainly improving, yet a poor first season lingers over his name whenever mentioned. Downing is certainly an out and out winger with the ability to cross and shoot, and will most likely feature, providing no replacement is brought in.
Joe Cole is in a similar position to Downing, though his commitment has won over a few more fans than Downing. However, Cole is not an out and out winger. He would fit into the "Tiki Taka" style of play better than Downing though. Cole is keen to make an impression and is therefore impossible to rule out.
Henderson will play in the midfield, finally, and therefore need not be discussed.
Bellamy is arguably the best choice, he was one of Liverpool's top performers last season. However, Bellamy is the wrong side of thirty, and his fitness is to questionable for him to be considered to start week-in and week-out.
It's a hard decision then.
Personally I'd go for Bellamy and Downing when the former is fit, and when Bellamy needs resting, Cole to take his place.