Good teams are often differentiated from the bad ones through their ability to bounce back following adversity. Liverpool, after quite a spectacular run following a chastening defeat to Tottenham, are in need of a good result fater two successive defeats. While the loss against Swansea City was hard to take, the defeat at the hands of West Brom will hurt even more as it pretty much ended Liverpool’s realistic chance of lifting some silverware.
The Reds have a pretty good squad, but the sale of their best-attacking player will be a blow. With a few days left, they need to sign someone to not only to ensure that they don’t leave themselves vulnerable in the second half of the season, but also to avoid going on a rut, something that happened last season when Coutinho and Mane were missing owing to injury and the AFCON.
So, at a time when you’d expect the Reds to be busy signing players, they have been linked with selling them. A bit surprising, innit?
The latest player to be linked with an exit is Daniel Sturridge. After an injury-prone season, it’s perhaps wise for the Reds to get rid of the Englishman. Having said that, the timing is extremely odd once again.
Philippe Coutinho was destined to leave the club and quite a few fans had come to terms with that. But was selling him in midseason a wise move? Sturridge doesn’t deserve a Liverpool stay considering he hardly ever plays, but is selling him just a few days before the January deadline a wise move?
Liverpool’s transfer business under FSG has been odd, to say the least. While they have broken the club record thrice in the last year or so already (Salah, Keita and van Dijk), the aim has always been to make profits through sales rather than reinvest.
The players Liverpool have sold so far should have given them enough space on the wage bill to go after proven players who could challenge for a first-team spot. Last night’s defeat against West Brom was particularly infuriating because the side were chasing two goals and Klopp could only bring on the likes of Ings and Henderson; able players but not the ones you’d want when you want to challenge for honours.
When you compare Liverpool’s situation with the rest of the sides, you can see the difference. Their rivals – Tottenham and Arsenal — haven’t had that bad a window. While Arsenal lost Sanchez, they managed to squeeze out a swap deal for Mkhitaryan who could turn out to be a shrewd acquisition. Spurs, on the other hand, could end up with Lucas Moura who will add more depth to their squad.
Last season, Liverpool somehow got away with. But the same might not happen this time.