Why Liverpool’s August transfer history is hardly inspiring

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Liverpool v Crystal Palace - Premier League
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Ethan Golding questions Liverpool’s ability when it comes to late transfer deals and asks whether saving face is the right way to go. 

It is clear to everybody that Klopp’s side is in need of reinforcements before the season gets into full swing. Last January Liverpool’s good form dissipated in the wake of Mané’s participation in the AFCON and injury to crucial first team players such as Philippe Coutinho and Jordan Henderson.

It may only be August but the Winter period of Premier League football is one of the most, if not the most difficult, period of league football in Europe and it comes almost without warning.

As Jamie Carragher pointed out, a centre-back may not solve Liverpool’s frailties during set-pieces but Jamie Redknapp was not wrong when he pointed out that a more commanding defender would take control of the situation – something that Lovren is incapable of doing (despite what he may think) and Matip does not do consistently enough.

Virgil van Dijk’s Liverpool move hasn’t died yet and remains the target fans most want. Beyond that, there does not seem to be any outright targets. Benedikt Höwedes seems to be available for £18 – £20 million and would also provide the commanding presence that seems lacking.

Naby Keïta seems to set to remain at RB Leipzig at least until January. He does not seem likely to sign a contract extension and RBL may look to cash in on the midfielder during the January window: WARNING this is merely speculation on my part.

In recent weeks Nice’s “discount Keïta” Jean Michaël Seri has been linked with a move to Merseyside. The signing of Seri and Howedes would represent a step down from VVD and Keïta, but, combined with FSG’s firm stance on Coutinho’s future, would represent somewhat of ‘saving face’ scenario for the Club’s owners.

A third utility signing in the form of Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain seemed good business at the beginning of the window but now seems insufficient with initial primary targets now seemingly unattainable.

A move for German international Julian Draxler would be great business with the PSG man available for only £40million currently. However, with the German already turning down a move to Liverpool in favour of a more lucrative PSG move and Jurgen Klopp being notorious for only wanting players who want to play for the club as well as holding a grudge, this move seems unlikely at this point in time.

Klopp has mentioned recently that had the window already closed, he would be happy to manage the squad he has and they are capable of playing football as he wants them to play. Since his arrival, Klopp has also not made a single August signing thus far.

So the question should be asked: Should Liverpool even bother signing anybody at this point?

Since Rafael Benitez’s tenure, there have only been a handful of good signings made in August and even less truly quality additions. I have compiled a list of the signings the club have made in August since 2004 and put these signings in bold and underlined them.

There are a couple of other names in bold such as Joe Allen who never lived up to the title of Welsh Xavi, but showed glimpses of real quality and during his time working under Klopp became somewhat of a cult hero.

Ultimately, I’ll leave it up to you the reader to decide whether or not you feel okay with not making a signing this month. It’s clear that the squad still needs reinforcements, that much is obvious. But across 13 years and 5 managers, Liverpool’s August business has been wholly underwhelming and at times disastrous.

The spectrum is extremely wide-ranging from Xabi Alonso to Paul Konchesky, with the majority of the list leaning towards the latter.

I am very much on the side of make signings, but only if they are of notable quality. It is not the fact that we have failed to get our top targets so far, it is the manner in which the club has failed and although signings like Howedes, Seri and Draxler would save face, perhaps not signing anybody and saving the fans from another signing of the likes of Aly Cissokho, would save face of another sort.

Rafael Benitez June 2004 – June 2010

 

     Antonio Nunez Real Madrid £1,500,000 17 August 2004
Xabi Alonso Real Sociedad £10,700,000 20 August 2004
Luis Garcia Barcelona £6,000,000 20 August 2004
Miki Roque Lleidav Unknown 15 August 2005
Jack Hobbs Lincoln £150,000 18 August 2005
Besian Idrizaj LASK Linz £190,000 22 August 2005
Dirk Kuyt Feyenoord £9,000,000 18 August 2006
Nabil El Zhar St Etienne £200,000 21 August 2006
Charles Itandje Lens Undisclosed 9 August 2007
Emiliano Insua Boca Juniors £1,300,000 26 August 2007
Albert Riera Espanyol £8,000,000 31 August 2008/1 September 2008
Alberto Aquilani Roma £17,100,000 7 August 2009
Sotirios Kyrgiakos AEK Athens £2,000,000 21 August 2009

 

Roy Hodgson July 2010 – January 2011

 

Christian Poulsen Juventus £4,550,000 11 August 2010
Brad Jones Middlesbrough £2,300,000 18 August 2010
Raul Meireles Porto £11,500,000 29 August 2010
Paul Konchesky Fulham £3,500,000 31 August 2010

 

Kenny Dalglish January 2011 – May 2012

 

Jose Enrique Newcastle £6,000,000 12 August 2011
Sebastian Coates Nacional £8,000,000 30 August 2011
Craig Bellamy Man City Free 31 August 2011

 

Brendan Rodgers June 2012 – October 2015

 

Joe Allen Swansea £15,000,000 10 August 2012
Oussama Assaidi Heerenveen £2,400,000 17 August 2012
Nuri Sahin Real Madrid Loan 25 August 2012
Samed Yesil Bayer Leverkusen £1,000,000 30 August 2012
Aly Cissokho Valencia Loan 20 August 2013
Javier Manquillo Atletico Madrid Loan 6 August 2014
Alberto Moreno Sevilla £12,000,000 16 August 2014
Mario Balotelli AC Milan £16,000,000 25 August 2014
Taiwo Awoniyi Imperial Soccer Academy £800,000 31 August 2015

 

Jurgen Klopp October 2015 – Present: Yet to make an August signing.

 

Jurgen Klopp BVB May 08 – May 15 

 

Mohamed Zidan Hamburger SV €2,800,000 17 August 2008
Damien Le Tallec Stade Rennes €300,000 6 August 2009
2010 N/A
2011 N/A
2012 N/A
2013 N/A
Shinji Kagawa Manchester United Undisclosed 31 August 2014

 

Let Ethan know below what you think. Should Liverpool be looking to sign players this late on in the window? 

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