Filling The Gaps

Posted by

By Jayden Nikolic

So Jordan Henderson has (all but) signed for Liverpool. First and foremost, congratulations. An excellent addition to ANY club. And of course, best of luck to David N’gog in the future. However, I’m quite perplexed at the moment in relation to some of our transfer targets. All reports indicate that we’re being linked with yet another midfielder, in Charlie Adam. Don’t get me wrong, I’m a huge fan of the lad. Great player, was fantastic at Blackpool.
However, at this point in time we already have: Gerrard, Lucas, Meireles, Maxi, Spearing, Shelvey, Jovanovic, Poulsen, Cole and now Henderson as well, all players in the centre of the park. Kuyt can also be classified as a midfield player. That gives us a total of 12 (counting Adam and Kuyt) midfielders. Do we really need Charlie Adam? Do we really even need to strengthen our midfield anymore? The following is a list of players I believe we need to sell, buy, or loan out to strengthen us as a squad.

Christian Poulsen: Let’s start with the obvious. I don’t even think I need to give a reason as why he needs to go. SELL.

Paul Konchesky: Absolutely woeful. Not even good enough to play for the reserves. I wouldn’t even let him play at Everton. SELL.

Joe Cole: Not a bad player by any means, however, I can’t see him fitting in with Liverpool’s midfield and needs to go to make way for our young guns. His first season was shocking, and his wages are far too high for the calibre of player he is. SELL.

Milan Jovanovic: He tripped over his own feet in his first game. I don’t think I’ve ever lost faith in a player so quick in my life after seeing that. Astronomical wages and no real skill as a player in the english game. Thank the Lords of football we got him on a Bosman. SELL.

Maxi Rodriguez: I’m probably going to cop a lot of flack for this one I think. But in my opinion, Maxi hasn’t shown enough as a player for me. Very inconsistent. Very frustrating to watch. I don’t think he gives his all in every game, goes down on the weakest challenge and doesn’t show enough skill on the ball. Yes, he was fantastic toward the end of the season. But the way he had been playing before he ‘came to form’ would he have been selected for Argentina in the Copa America? I have a sneaking suspicion that competition had a lot to do with him hitting form. Big risk to see if he stays where he finished and with the form he hit, we could probably get a very good price for him, reclaim what we payed and then some. SELL.

Nabil El Zhar: Bit of a no brainer, never really made much of an impact, isn’t someone who is overly skilled or valuable as a player. SELL.

Jay Spearing: Had an amazing impact during the absence of Steven Gerrard, really stepped up to the plate and filled that spot well, connected brilliantly with Lucas and made sure we didn’t notice Stevie G was missing. However, still very young, and with our midfield as overstocked as it is, would more than likely drop back to the bench, especially with Henderson coming through and Gerrard coming back after his surgery. This is a kid who needs first team football. LOAN.

Jonjo Shelvey: In the same boat as Spearo, great, young talent. Going to be a big boon to this club when he get more experience, fantastic in midfield, but needs more first team football. LOAN.

Sotirios Kyrgiakos: Clumsy, made too many mistakes, given away too many penalties. I’d love to say the goals he’s scored from corners makes up for it, but they don’t. And Andy Carrol is more than enough of a replacement in that regard. Add to the fact that he’s getting on in age and it’s a pretty easy decision. SELL.

Alberto Aquilani: As much as I would love to see the kid stay at Liverpool, unfortunately he has his heart set on staying in Italy. Big loss financially, but one that is necessary to take. I really did enjoy watching him play for us and did think he would have been a welcome addition to the squad. But Raul Meireles is the better option. SELL.

Raheem Sterling, John Flanagan, Nathan Eccleston, Jack Robinson: All exciting prospects from the youth academy, very much on the verge of breaking through to our First team. Flanagan and Robinson already having had their debuts. I have no doubt in my mind that LFC will be in good hands with these kids coming up. I think right now, for them to get the most experience possible, the should be loaned out, to get some first team experience, either in the Championship or some of the lower table premier league clubs. LOAN.

In regards to players that should be coming through. We need to strengthen the left back position, we need to strengthen our centre backs and we need some new strikers for back up, especially with N’gog heading over to Sunderland. Wingers are also needed to help feed the ball to Carrol and Suarez for us to get optimal use out of those two, Carrol especially. This is a list of who I believe would be good for Liverpool F.C.

Emiliano Insua: Could really help us with our left back troubles, if only as a subsitute or backup. I think it was a little harsh to send him away on loan, because he’s a great player and I enjoyed watching him play in the EPL. I think be it that he is young and susceptible as he is, he could learn a lot under Kenny and improve dramatically. A much better back up option then Glen Johnson playing out of position.

Jose Enrique: I quite like this bloke. He has pace, a good touch and has a great mind for his surrounding on the pitch. Would most certainly fit in with out current squad, and would be a great addition to our defense. With Insua as back up in case of injury or fatigue, Jose Enrique would be perfect for Liverpool.

Charlie Adam: Quite contradictory of myself, I know. But Adam is a fantastic player. Could be terrific as an impact subsitute. And if things were to pan out the way I would like, as written in this piece, our midfield would drop by five. One more presence in the midfield could really push our current roster to perform to their utmost best, because Adam is a skilled player, who could take just about anyone of our regular players spots.

Juan Mata: Most reports are linking us with the pint sized speedster for the wing. I like him a lot. I’ve said for quite some time now that he is someone that would fit in well with out club, and the purchase of Caroll has strengthened my view on this tenfold. Stuart Downing pales in comparison, as does Ashley Young. And with his humble attitude, and wanting only to play for his love of the game, not money, he has the qualities needed in a Livepool player off the pitch, as well as on.

Connor Wickham: Young starlet with a lot of potential, being heavily linked to our club. Given that Kuyt will almost always play in midfield, and Andy Carrol and Luis Suarez will most certainly start, we need a backup striker. Wickham is yet to show his full potential. He’s been tagged as the next Alan Shearer. And rightfully so. He’s certainly going to be a star and is someone I would love to see us take on now, because Kenny Dalglish would bring out the full potential of the lad. I think it’s also worth noting that it would be perfect timing for Dani Pacheco to start making more appearances.

Of course, this is all my opinion, and only time will tell as to who comes through. As is at this point in time, we stand to make some great purchases in the transfer market. I have the uttmost confidence in King Kenny and co, and know that as of next season, we will be flying high and making our triumphant return to the top four. Feel free to add anything you like in the comments, and follow me on Twitter. (bucky8) I hope you enjoyed my first (of hopefully many to come) post on Empire Of The Kop.


  1. there is alot of “deadwood” which has been listed and needs to go and also happens it is mainly the centre of the park thats why henderson and adam are being bought,we will have
    and maybe aquallani
    with shelvey and spearing probably going out on loan
    much stronger than last year and possible long term replacements for stevie g.
    just need a couple of wingers but kenny knows what he is doing!ynwa

  2. i carnt believe the amount of money we are spending on this guy , 20m should buy you a world class proven talent not a maybe. we have some exiting young talent at the club already so why arnt we buying proven quality players. 20m is what is being quoted for mata and i know who i’d want in a red shirt.i will suport any player wearing the red shirt but i’m not impressed with the over priced english players we are linked with e.g downing,charlie adams and young altho i wouldnt mind johnson from city . we should be looking to players like mata,johnson,hazard or hulk

  3. i totally disagree with your charlie adam and Aquilani summarys but other than that. ohh and isnt jordan henderson a winger not center mid?

  4. Re: Maxi. Could it be all he ever needed was a Suarez to link with? I personally think he should be kept. as to John Flanagan & Jack Robinson we can’t afford to send them out on loan with the back four we have, Kelly, Agger and Aurelio are all prone to injury, Mr Liverpool Jamie Carragher is not getting any younger so that leaves Skrtel and Wilson who appears to be going back to Scotland on loan.

    We have not got the funds available to Chelski and City to replace the whole back line this term.

  5. First of all a big warm welcome to jordan henderson looking forwad to see some silky pases from him. As for maxi its 50- 50 decision he is good back up to have, though sometimes he frustrates everyone by missing easy goals and going down easily, i think kk will give him one more season or atleast till dec. we should sell poulson and konchesky to wba so they reunite with. overall a nice read mate. ynwa

  6. Completely agree with getting rid of maxi, not good enough in my book. We need some blistering pace in the side, and I would really love to see N’Zogbia at Liverpool. I can’t see spearing going anywhere and therefore there isn’t really a place for Adam. We need to sign out and out wingers and if we do, that will leave Gerrard, Lucas, Meireles, Henderson, Spearing and Shelvey to fight it out for 2 central midfield slots. Would be great to see Connor Wickam as we definitely need back up strikers. But our wings are certainly the place I feel we need to strengthen the most. Cash in on Cole, Jovanovic and Maxi.

    1. lol seriously thats not gonna happen. he is the only good thing happened to us bcoz of roy

  7. Henderson can play on the wing or central. But like I said I think we need some real pace on the wings and I think he’s been signed as a center mid. The reason we are paying this money for young english players is because of the ‘homegrown’ rule, at the moment you need 7 homegrown players but that is only going to increase. I’m glad we’re signing the best young english talent because in a few years united, chelsea and city will all be wishing they did! In kenny we trust.

    1. Except the home grown rule says players must have done their academy time in the UK (or just England?), not that they actually have to be English. I read an article about an English kid playing for Porto’s youth academy and reserves (his parents work there) and he would not qualify as “home grown” if he came back to England. Actually placing employment restrictions based on nationality is illegal in the EU, so the youth academy thing is sort of a loophole. I say this because quite a few players on Chelski and Arsenal qualify as home grown but aren’t English.

  8. Excellent article. Agree with most of it, such as those to SELL and those to LOAN. However, the disagreement comes, as you might expect, on who to buy.

    First of, to fill the old Alonso position I do not think we should go for any other attacking centre midfielders, especially Adam, as we have enough with FOUR competing for one position with Gerrard, Miereles Spearing and now Henderson (excluding those like Shelvey that should go out on LOAN for at least a year).So, NO MORE please!

    However, at defensive centre midfield we only have Lucas, so we do need a Mascherano type alternative for competition and injury. That means pick one from Defour, Matuidi,McCarthy, M’Vila or even young Phil Jones who can play this position or centre back. So, it is ONE to choose.

    On the wings we may be able to choose from Marveaux (who we may already have on a Bosman pre-contract with), Hazard, Jeffren, Elia, Mata, Afellay, Young, Downing, Adam Johnson,Gervinho (also a second striker) and others.Lots of options for KK!!!IF we sell Maxi, we THREE from these to provide cover and competition.

    As another forward, as Kuyt will need replacing in a couple of years, how about Bojan and Wickham (to loan back again for a year for more experience)? And we still have Pacheco out on loan.

    And left back? More choices: Coentrao, Aly Sissokho, Enrique, Leyton Baines, with Insua or better still Sakho (who is a left sided centre back who can cover left back). So it is ONE + cover.

    That leaves Centre Backs : Cahill, Kjaer, Phil Jones,Sakho(again), Mertsecker, Dann, amongst others. Probably need TWO, but as Sakho and Jones play in other positions we may not if buying these.

    In the end, there are many choices and permutations to make a team – and that is what KK and the scouts are for, and we must just trust their judgement. Probably can do well with about 5 or 6 players in and over a dozen out!

  9. I was quite puzzled with our signing of Hendo, but Kenny realises that Steven Gerrard wont play 4eva so he has bought someone who can be tutored by Stevie alongside Jonjo, Suso, Coady and Spearo. These five are the future of LFC, in the central midfield that is.

  10. I can not believe that we bought with such a price a May Be Player, while MAN U bought with less amount a well proven winger that we desperately need, why we let Ashley Young join MAN U, they always buy what they want and they leave the waste for us…gutted as always with our transfers.

  11. A big welcome 2 jordan henderson.yes i agree with the sale of poulsen maxi j cole jovanovic el zhar and soitoris.with replacement since its youth kk needs i would recommend jordan ayew of marseille young n talented winger a solid midfielder in mcCharthy n jan verthongen of ajax as da kk we trust

  12. Glad to see so many of you liked the article, rapt to see a good response so far. In regards to Jordan Henderson, it may not seem like smart business to pay so much for a young player, but in the same token, he is young, has (seemingly) near limitless potential, and won’t be put on at a high wage like one of his tried and true counterparts. So he fits the FSG mould perfectly. If we pay 20 mil for this young man NOW, it shows him that we want him as a long term play which (hopefully) will bring out a fierce loyalty in him. Enough for him to leave his hometown and give his all at Liverpool.

    1. great article it is indeed. what i am really confused about is some media claiming that hendo’s value and carrol’s value will rise in the future when they become a superstar but the thing is, they are already overpriced and it’s not that they are anything special. like rooney who can run fast and is a good finisher for an english striker(f***ing mancs!) whose value can rise rapidly cause he has so much to offer, but seriously, these over hyped british players are just a waste of money, hope i’m wrong though. but what i’m really antcipating is, if we can spend like 20m on a central midfielder(which is not our main priority at the moment), then who knows we might have loads of money to spend in other positions as well! =D


    2. great article it is indeed. what i am really confused about is some media claiming that hendo’s value and carrol’s value will rise in the future when they become a superstar but the thing is, they are already overpriced and it’s not that they are anything special. like rooney who can run fast and is a good finisher for an english striker(MANUre!) whose value can rise rapidly cause he has so much to offer, but seriously, these over hyped british players are just a waste of money, hope i’m wrong though. but what i’m really antcipating is, if we can spend like 20m on a central midfielder(which is not our main priority at the moment), then who knows we might have loads of money to spend in other positions as well! =D


  13. We need wingers!! Hazard is a genius suggestion, quality and exciting player! if we are after so many central mids, maybe we are going to play a diamond formation a la AC Milan class of 2005? it seems like we are after young players with the ability to pick a pass, so also maybe we are considering the 433 approach used by Barcelona, with 2 creative mid’s ( 2 out of hendo, gerrard, meireles and Shelvey/Adam) and a more destructive centre mid ( 1 out of Lucas/Spearing) with rotation in mind, and with suarez and kuyt the wingers for Carroll? These are all maybe’s, but it is a sucessful system that Steve Clarke worked with under mourinho at chelsea during their good (robben + duff + drog) days? these are all maybes, but its definately an exciting time to be an LFC fan thats for sure!!

  14. Why loan out all of our academy players who have come through and performed well?

    Flanagan should not go on loan. Neither should Spearing. Our biggest problems have come from a severe lack of depth. Pushing these guys to the bench for ROTATION is a much better option than sending them out on loan. Dalglish has shown that he knows how to get the youngsters some game time.

    Otherwise, fairly good article.

    Secondly, to the fools who keep saying Henderson cost us 20 mil: I highly doubt we spent 20 mil cash. N’Gog is in the deal for a reason. We most likely paid 13-14 mil for Henderson (which is completely fair) and threw in N’Gog to bump up the total VALUATION to 20. N’Gog was nothing here anyways so it’s great business.

Comments are closed