Lack of attacking options proving costly for Liverpool
Liverpool have badly struggled this season as Brendan Rodgers continues to build his Liverpool side and make a transition back to the days where the club was regularly and strongly competing for the top four.
Liverpool currently sit 12th on the Premier League table and look set for a season of mid-table obscurity unless Rodgers can bring in key attacking players during the January transfer window.
Liverpool have been extremely short up front with Luis Suarez the only high profile striker at the club. When he was suspended for the recent league game against West Ham it meant Rodgers was forced to play a midfielder as the lone striker.
The problem this has created for Rodgers is the fact that he has no alternatives. When sides figure out a solid way to deal with Suarez’s presence then Liverpool have no alternatives and it makes them easy to pick off.
Many will suggest that the manager only has himself to blame by allowing Andy Carroll to leave the club and join West Ham United on loan because he didn’t fit in with the passing style of play that he was, and still is, trying to create.
He was also left inadequately funded when the owners came up with just £5 million for him to spend on attacking cover at the last minute of the last transfer window. Rodgers chose to not sign anyone as he simply couldn’t get the calibre of player he desired for the funds provided.
Liverpool have only managed to score ten goals at home this season which is a worse record than both Wigan and Reading, two clubs in the bottom three. This suggests that when Suarez is quiet, the team is quiet.
They have performed slightly better away from home with 13 goals scored but the majority of goals have been enabled by counter attacking play where the home side leaves a lot of space for Liverpool to exploit.
January cannot come fast enough because Rodgers has already confirmed that a lack of attacking options is hurting the club and also that there is cash available for him to spend in the loan and transfer markets.
However, only having Suarez as an available striker means the club is now clutching at straws in terms of ambition for the season.
Many Liverpool players and former players have suggested the club will mount a strong push for the top four in the second half of the season but the inadequacy of the Liverpool squad up to January has made this virtually impossible.
Liverpool’s best chance of success comes domestically with the FA Cup but that competition has proven time and time again that anything can happen regardless of a club’s position on the football league ladder.
Their current squad depth means that unless they sign eligible players for Europa League matches in January, they will slowly get picked off in that tournament by far superior and more experienced teams.
Goals win matches and the best player to score the goals is a striker. As soon as Fabio Borini picked up a foot injury, the club was left badly short of attacking options and unless that changes, Liverpool will be stuck in a rut.