Can Liverpool’s New Signings Cover For The Loss Of Suarez?
Here we look at whether Liverpool’s new signings are going to be able to compensate for the huge loss of striker Luis Suarez – who joined Barcelona this summer
Liverpool’s decision to sell Luis Suarez was made for non-footballing reasons and the drama leading up to his sale is well documented. The Reds must move on but it will be seriously difficult to compensate for a player who scored so heavily for the club.
The Uruguayan leaves Anfield after netting 82 times in 133 matches on Merseyside and despite missing the start of last season after another controversial incident, the striker returned an incredible 31 strikes in 37 games.
Liverpool are at 13.50 with Betfair to win the Premier League in 2014-15 but have they adequately replaced a man whose goals took them so close to their first Premiership title last time around?
The new boys
Rickie Lambert was signed from Southampton before the incident involving Suarez at the World Cup and at that stage, the England international was fully expected to act as back up for the two established centre forwards. However, with only Daniel Sturridge remaining from the potent pairing, could Lambert step up and become a first team regular?
The striker’s record at Southampton is a respectable one and he leaves St Mary’s having scored 106 times in 207 league matches. With better all-round service, that goals to games ratio can only improve.
Following the departure of Suarez, Brendan Rodgers swooped to pick up 20 year old Serbian international Lazar Markovic from Benfica. The player was billed by many areas of the press as a striker but in truth, he is deployed mostly on the wing and would only play up front for his new club in a real emergency.
Meanwhile, Reds fans must have high hopes for their newest signing Loic Remy who is set to cross to Anfield after impressing at Newcastle last season. French international Remy had an impressive spell on loan at St James’s Park and with no likelihood of a return to parent club QPR, Rodgers fought off interest from Arsenal and Spurs to land his target.
The 27 year old notched 14 goals in 27 matches during the season but most of those came at the time when the Magpies were performing well and beating sides such as Spurs and Manchester United on their own turf. Remy’s later absences partly led to a dismal end to the campaign for Alan Pardew’s side and here is another man who could thrive in a team where he receives better service form the likes of Raheem Sterling and Adam Lallana.
The old faces
In any other side, Daniel Sturridge’s return of 24 goals in 33 matches would have had the press drooling but the former Chelsea man was simply eclipsed by Suarez in 2013/14. The question for Liverpool fans now is if the England international can keep up that prolific level or whether he will suffer a loss of form without his former strike partner.
Unless the Reds bring in another player, Sturridge will become the senior striker and that builds added pressure. Elsewhere within the existing squad, Fabio Borini is unlikely to take any of that pressure away even if he stays at Anfield. The Italian wants to turn down a move to Sunderland and fight for a place at Liverpool but his scoring record just doesn’t compare to Suarez or Sturridge.
So has Brendan Rodgers finished his summer dealing or can we expect more signings on Anfield before the transfer window closes? Does the answer to the gaping hole left by Luis Suarez exist within the current squad or do the owners need to dig a little deeper to bring in a Radamel Falcao or even a Romelu Lukaku ahead of the new campaign?
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