Luis Suarez has claimed that he is committed to Liverpool, whether or not they qualify for the Champions League this season. The Uruguayan made no secret of his desire to leave the club last summer, but Liverpool steadfastly refused to sell to rivals Arsenal. Since then Suarez has signed a new contract and has been outstanding on the pitch. He currently leads the Premier League scoring charts with 24 goals.
Despite the positives, there has still been a suspicion that Suarez would again look to move if Liverpool once more failed to make it into Europe’s elite. Yet, when asked by FourFourTwo magazine whether his future at Anfield depended on playing in the Champions League, Suarez explained that he was happy at the club, regardless.
"I think so,” he said. “I signed my new contract because I'm very happy here and I want to stay where I'm enjoying football and life. Playing in the Champions League isn't dependent on that.
"I'd actually prefer not to win this Golden Boot and for Liverpool to qualify for the Champions League this season. Any player would miss the Champions League. We've not been good enough since I've been here to qualify, but this could definitely be our year. It would be a frustration not to get fourth because we've done everything possible and given our maximum to qualify.”
With Liverpool currently in fine form and sitting second in the Premier League, it could well prove to be a moot question. And If Liverpool do secure Champions League qualification then not only will it help them keep their current stars but it will also aid them significantly in bring others into the club.
If the Daily Mail is to be believed, Tottenham’s Jan Vertonghen could be one of them. The paper has claimed that Brendan Rodgers will move for the center-back if they get into the Champions League. The Belgium international has been impressive since arriving from Ajax in the summer of 2012 and his signing would boost an area of the team that has been Liverpool’s weakest this season. However, Tottenham’s undoubted reluctance to sell one of their leading players to a direct rival means the chances of a move are slim.
A more realistic target would be Vertonghen’s former teammate at White Hart Lane, Steven Caulker. The 22-year-old has been a rare bright light in Cardiff City’s difficult season and the Daily Telegraph believes that Liverpool are considering a move this summer. Rodgers worked with the center-back while he was on loan at Swansea two seasons ago. Caulker, who has earned a recall to the England squad for Wednesday’s friendly with Denmark, cost £8.5 million when Cardiff signed him from Tottenham last summer.
Liverpool’s efforts in the January transfer window centered on trying to secure more attacking talent and, having missed out on Mohamed Salah and Yevhen Konoplyanka, that is again likely to be on his agenda for the summer. Citing stories in Portugal, Talksport has reported that the Reds are tracking Benfica attacking midfielder Nicolas Gaitan. The Argentina international was strongly linked to Manchester United two years ago and, like Konoplyanka, operates from the left side.