Liverpool’s term came to a close in rather thrilling fashion Sunday at Anfield, but unfortunately for supporters the end result doesn’t include a long awaited Premier League title. The Reds eventually claimed two second half goals to clinched second on the table in the 2-1 victory over Newcastle.
And thus begins what will be a very busy summer transfer session for manager Brendan Rodgers, who clearly has some sculpting and planning to do with his back line and midfield.
Rodgers could make a significant upgrade immediately by signing out-of-contract Chelsea full-back Ashley Cole, who has refused the Blues reduced wage for a chance at testing the market, according to Daily Mirror.
Sixteen years at back line in Premier League between Arsenal and Chelsea, along with 107 appearances with England’s national team leave Cole with plenty of options around Europe.
Real Madrid, Manchester United and Manchester City are chasing Cole as well, and while his resume dictates a high wage Cole’s age, 33, doesn’t provide the infusion of youth Merseyside requires.
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Qualifying for Champions League puts the Reds in a very unique position where players instead chase after their roster spots rather than the other way around. Case in point, Southampton midfielder Adam Lallana, who made his title intentions very clear ahead of Sunday’s final match versus Manchester United.
“I'm ambitious. I want to one day play in Champions League and compete for Premier League title,” Lallana said according to Daily Mirror. “I got emotional (at the awards) because it's a journey I couldn't have dreamed of but i'm not saying this is the end by any means.
"There are going to be some decisions to make in the summer and maybe it all hit home a little bit when I was speaking.”
The Reds are expected to make a £20 million offer for Lallana next week and by all indications he seems highly inclined to a switch that guarantees top-level tournaments.
The attack certainly hasn’t been a major issue for Liverpool this season, registering 101 goals during the campaign, but they did struggle to score early against Newcastle and another forward could make the Reds even more lethal.
Enter Barcelona winger Cristian Tello, the player stuck behind the likes of Neymar and Lionel Messi at Camp Nou. Liverpool have reportedly already made an offer of £8 million to the Catalans, according to Metro. The Reds nearly acquired the 22-year-old last summer until he re-signed with Barcelona, however this time around the Catalans are rebuilding and would likely consummate a move.
Tello appeared in 22 games during La Liga this season, including two starts, and he could be promised more regular time while staying within striking distance of Champions League. He’s never played outside of Spain before, but Tello has the talent to transition well to Premier League.