When taking into account the 23 matches missed by Daniel Sturridge, Mario Balotelli’s singular goal, and last summer’s topline signings of Lazar Markovic and Rickie Lambert contributing a combined four goals, Liverpool’s recent ties to struggling-but-talented talisman Radamel Falcao seem more than reasonable.
However, any pursuit of the disappointing Colombian and current on-loan Manchester United striker could greatly hinder the Reds real need come this summer’s transfer session: a backline in need of serious reinforcement.
A report from Daily Mail indicated Falcao could be off to Merseyside, but manager Brendan Rodgers’ side is actually focused on seeing how the rest of the Premier League term plays out.
Following their massive 2-1 victory over United last weekend, Liverpool are currently fifth on the domestic table, five points back of the Red Devils for Champions League qualification, a small wonder the glaring lack of goals.
The same report made clear that Falcao is expected to return to Ligue 1’s Monaco this summer and “weigh” his options, but that he also does desire another go-round in England. Whether that return is with Louis van Gaal’s side remains clouded.
Netting only four goals after dominating La Liga with Atletico Madrid, Falcao’s market value has dropped to roughly £40 million, a price Rodgers and Liverpool are likely to negotiate down for any chance to sign the 29-year-old.
The need to lockdown a top flight striker could be made all the more pertinent with Manchester City reportedly plotting £100 million move to land not only Juventus’ highly rated midfielder Paul Pogba but also Reds attacking midfielder Raheem Sterling, according to The Sun.
Yet with defenders Glen Johnson, Kolo Toure and Joe Flanagan all out of contract this summer, a purse that size could be better used along the Reds backline.
And according to recent reports the backline appears to be a priority for Rodgers. Schalke defender Kyriakos Papadopoulos, who’s currently on-loan to Bayer Leverkusen in Bundesliga, desires a change of leagues and Rodgers is will to make a permanent deal worth £4.4 million, Metro reports.
A 23-year-old native of Greece, Papadopoulos primarily plays at center back and has the size and strength to lead the Reds backline similar to Toure.
Should Papadopoulos come on board, Liverpool could have more confidence in defense, and Rodgers may then address the attack’s needs. Enter Dynamo Kiev winger Andriy Yarmolenko, a 25-year-old Ukrainian Premier League talent with 65 goals in 163 appearances in the last eight years.
Liverpool are sizing up a £19.5 million bid for Yarmolenko, according to Daily Star, but face competition from United and first-place Chelsea, all of whom were put on alert after Yarmolenko helped his team bump Everton of Europa League with a 5-2 victory.
Considering the majority of Liverpool’s goals have come out of midfield, and the fact that Steven Gerrard will be gone shortly, Yarmolenko can slide immediately into the starting lineup with little effect to the Reds' attacking flow.