Rodgers Targets Quality as Window Winds Down

Thananuwat Srirasant

At his weekly press conference, Liverpool manager Brendan Rodgers denied rumours Napoli had bid £10M for Martin Skrtel and suggested the club knew it needed to buy quality to improve their league standing.

Much of Brendan Rodgers press conference ahead of Saturday's visit to Aston Villa inevitably focused on transfers, with questions ranging from Willian to Skrtel to just what comes next for a club looking to spend but seemingly unable to find anyone either willing to be bought or worth what the cost.

The growing obsession with measuring the mood and body language of the various players in Liverpool's summer dramas may often seem silly and tiresome, but it was hard not to read at least some disappointment in Rodgers' tone when he reflected on Liverpool's failures so far in the market.

"I think over the course of the summer we’ve been very ambitious in our attempts to get in players to improve the team," said the manager of attempts to sign Henrikh Mkhitaryan, Diego Costa, and Willian. "If it’s one when we can’t get them in we just have to move on.

"We’ve got eleven days to go, we have to do everything we possibly can [because] if you’re going to climb the league you have to have quality."

Willian's imminent move to fellow top four aspirants Tottenham is the latest and perhaps harshest blow yet, but if Liverpool are to narrow the gap between where they are and where they need to be there is still time to find another signing or two with the quality to make a difference.

On top of the suggestion Liverpool are still looking to bring in a major attacking signing, Rodgers admitted that he hopes to sign a centre back so that Andre Wisdom can be loaned out for the season. However, he insisted that there has been no approach from Napoli for Martin Skrtel.

"I think for us to maximise young Andre Wisdom's talent we need to get him some games," said Rodgers. "The idea is to get him out on loan—but I can only do that if we bring someone in with a bit more experience.

"I just think that the position that he plays, it’s preferable if you have that wee bit of experience. We introduced him into the team last season at right-back and he’d done very, very well as a young player stepping in [but] he played centre half throughout pre-season and I think that’ll be his number one position."

A bit of quality up front, enough to help Liverpool "climb the league," and some depth at the back such that Andre Wisdom can head out on loan seem eminently sensible goals. In which case commence hope and/or depression depending on whether you think they're goals Liverpool are likely to achieve by September 2nd.

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