As Liverpool’s season continues to drift, manager Brendan Rodgers will be waiting anxiously for the January transfer window to open. Having spent heavily over the summer, the club’s owners may not be happy at the thought of reinvesting next month but many believe that the Reds’ chances of remaining as top four contenders will be over if they don’t address issues within the squad.
Here are five players that Brendan may be considering as that window draws closer.
Asmir Begovic – Stoke
Criticism of Simon Mignolet continues while Brad Jones showed against Manchester United that he isn’t ready to step up. Rodgers may therefore decide to reinforce from the back and although Begovic has insisted he is happy at the Britannia, the Bosnian is in demand and could be ready for a new challenge at a bigger club.
This deal might seem unlikely but the Potters have a ready made replacement in England international Jack Butland who has reached the stage of his career where he needs regular first team football.
Jan Vertonghen – Spurs
One player who – it is suggested – isn’t quite so happy with his current employers, is Belgian international Vertonghen. The central defender was criticised for his body language as his side’s top four chances slipped away last season and as he stalls on a new contract, rumours of a January switch have started to gather pace.
Manchester United are heavily linked but Vertonghen displays the type of leadership and versatility that would help reinforce the Anfield defence in the second half of the campaign. The Belgian can cover at left full-back but he is best deployed in his favoured position on the left side of central defence giving Rodgers options should he decide to make an approach.
Jay Rodriguez – Southampton
Liverpool in Southampton raid shock! It’s an obvious link to make given that Lallana, Lovren and Lambert are already here but Jay Rodriguez’s record as a Premier League striker is worth considering.
Ok, so in 2012-13 six in 35 matches is nothing to get excited about but 15 in 33 last time out shows a solid improvement and as he gets ready to return from injury, several clubs will be linked with a move. Liverpool may be encouraged to sign a prolific and expensive overseas name but Rodriguez has a decent record in England’s top flight and that shouldn’t be overlooked.
Mauro Icardi – Inter
Liverpool are just one of a host of Premiership clubs linked with the Argentinian and it’s easy to see why. At 21, Icardi has improved dramatically at Inter after a previous, subdued spell over at Sampdoria.
The forward has notched 17 goals in 36 Serie A appearances for his current employers and in a difficult, defensive league, that’s a solid ratio. It’s also a record that might see Chelsea in pole position but if Liverpool’s owners are prepared to dig deep one more time, Icardi could prove to be the signing of our season.
Yevhen Konoplyanka – Dnipr
Have Liverpool become a little too reliant on Raheem Sterling? The youngster will not be allowed to forget comments regarding tiredness while on England duty but if the Reds are looking for a wide man to provide back up / competition, Konoplyanka is a sound option.
He may not be similar in stature to Sterling but his direct approach and keen eye for goal sees several Premiership sides taking an interest, particularly as the player’s current contract expires in the summer. It remains to be seen whether any ill-feeling over last year’s failed deadline day deal has lingered between the two clubs but Liverpool will be linked with worse players than Yevhen Konoplyanka over the course of the next few weeks.