Liverpool's talks with primary defensive target Alberto Moreno have stalled to a standstill according to Sky Sports and other media outlets. Sevilla's sporting director said, "The matter of Alberto is practically settled. We couldn't reach an agreement and I don't think it can be revived." That's a shame because Moreno looked like an excellent solution to Liverpool's left back woes, and it strikes me as odd that on a day when our top defensive pursuit is pronounced dead, a multitude of connections to attackers spring up from reliable sources.
Versatile midfielder Adam Lallana is undergoing his medical today and is set to complete his £25m move to Liverpool soon. I've never loved Lallana at that price, although I do think that he's a solid player and I was especially impressed with him when he faced Liverpool in early March. He'll provide squad depth and his ability to slot into multiple positions matches well with Brendan's managerial style. It's safe to say that he'll be a solid pickup, but I would much rather put £25m towards a left back.
The Lallana rumor mill has churned for awhile, so news of his medical does not come as much of a surprise. But recent rumors connecting Liverpool to Divock Origi, Lazar Markovic, and Alexis Sanchez are quite intriguing, and again, a bit weird when you consider that Liverpool's weakness lies in the defense.
I elaborated more on my thoughts on Origi in my last post, but since then there's been a developing rumor that Liverpool may buy him and then loan him back to Lille. I was previously worried about Rodgers having his priorities wrong in his pursuit of the Belgium international, but if we can truly nab him for a fee under £10m and let him develop for awhile in France, it could be an absolute steal. Liverpool aren't yet at the point when they can sign the best of the best (although Champions League football helps), so it's important to buy young players who can develop into stars. Based on Origi's World Cup performances, he might just fit that vein.
#LFC also close to complete £6m move for Divock Origi & will send him back on loan to Lille. Club is also preparing bid for Markovic.[Times]— Total LFC (@TheTotalLFC) June 27, 2014
Benfica's Lazar Markovic is a player who's been quietly connected to Liverpool for awhile, but before today the rumors had never picked up much steam. About twenty days ago I wrote in the transfer thread:
"[Markovic] is starting to be linked to us as a Lallana alternative. He's 20 years old and blazing fast. Can play up front or on the wing. For me though he's totally different from Lallana and I'm not sure if he's worth a big money transfer yet just because he's still very raw and doesn't exactly fill a position of need. I mean we are looking for a winger I guess, but Shaqiri seems way more developed. Still, Markovic is someone to keep an eye on because he impressed for Serbia against Brazil in a friendly today and he seems to have loads of potential."
My thoughts on Markovic haven't changed much; he's an electric talent with immense potential but he's far from a sure thing. The fees being talked about for Markovic are similar to Lallana, and it seems like Liverpool might buy both players instead of one or the other. Throwing £50m at two attack minded players who at this point in time are not world class worries me. That said, I'm intrigued by Markovic as a prospect, and I think he can become a special player. If Liverpool were to sign Markovic, it would likely signal the end of talks with Bayern over Xherdan Shaqiri.
Liverpool moving rapidly in the transfer market. Deals for Origi & Lallana almost done and now a move for Benfica's Lazar Markovic too.— Tony Barrett (@TonyBarretTimes) June 27, 2014
There's also been speculation today that Liverpool are after Alexis Sanchez, which has fueled rumors that he would be part of a swap that would send Luis Suarez to Barcelona. As far as deals for Suarez go, if Liverpool can nab Sanchez and at least £40m, I think they have to pull the trigger.
It's been a wild day so far in terms of transfer activity, and while it's troublesome that Liverpool are focused solely on the attack, at least they're in pursuit of some incredibly talented players. Perhaps FSG are willing to commit more money than expected this window and Liverpool will be able to sign a few of these attacking names as well as some defensive reinforcement. All I know is that Glen Johnson better not be starting regularly next season. Stay tuned.