Is Liverpool’s left flank as badly served as the myriad of reported Reds transfer targets suggest?
Their current league position strongly indicates to the contrary, but boss Brendan Rodgers continues to be linked with moves for left-wingers and left-backs, with the latest in the latter group thought to be Sporting Lisbon’s Argentina international Marcos Rojo.
Rodgers’ side are up to second in the English top flight after a stellar second season so far under the Northern Irishman and have a game in hand on leaders Chelsea with the west Londoners still to play at home, making them top value at 3/1 to win their first ever Premier League title come season’s end.
A return to the Champions League for the first time since 2009 looks assured at 1/50, with Spurs nine points back in fifth having played a game more than Liverpool and the general consensus is that Rodgers will strengthen considerably – to the tune of £60m according to some reports – this summer.
The left side has been identified as the biggest weakness in the former Swansea chief’s squad and although Raheem Sterling has performed with aplomb out of position this term, cover for the 19-year-old right-footer is expected to be sought during the silly season.
Of more pressing concern for the Anfield faithful is the spot behind Sterling in defence, which has been filled for the majority of the current campaign by Aly Cissokho even though few on the red side of Stanley Park believe the on-loan French international is the long-term answer at left-back.
Cissokho is likely to return to parent club Valencia at the end of term, while former first-choice Jose Enrique has never been a fans’ favourite and hasn’t been seen on a football pitch since the start of November due to problems with his knees.
O Leoes’ 20-cap Albiceleste star Rojo is thought to be on the Reds’ radar regarding a replacement for Cissokho this summer, after starring during Sporting’s fine 2013/14 campaign so far, which sees them top of the Primeira Liga by seven points with as many games remaining.
However, whether the Merseysiders’ gaffer will plump for another Sporting defender this summer after parting with £7m to acquire the services of centre-half Tiago Ilori last September remains to be seen.
The 21-year-old failed to make his Liverpool debut before being packed off to La Liga mid-tablers Granada on loan in January and risks becoming one of the forgotten men of the Rodgers revolution.