Following staff changes and dealing with all the other stuff, which in truth can be pretty boring, the obvious thing I had to do was take a look at the squad. In the last few seasons, particularly under Brendan Rodgers, Liverpool have spent fortunes on players, well over £100million in fact. Despite this, Liverpool have a fairly average squad, it’s obvious that the money hasn’t been spent wisely. Overspending is something I will look to avoid, especially on declining players.
Although the squad is pretty average, the only ‘world class’ players I have are Daniel Sturridge and Phillipe Coutinho, I do have quite a lot of depth in most positions meaning I shouldn’t have to spend much in my first summer.
I will go from back to front when analysing the squad.
Mignolet will be first choice goalkeeper for this season at least, however I’m not entirely convinced on him and if he can’t impress me then I won’t hesitate to replace him next summer
Will be clear second choice goalkeeper, may get the odd game in the Capital One Cup
Will be backup, however I still want him to develop into a decent goalkeeper for both his sake and our sake as he has potential to be a good keeper, will train with the first team but made available for under 21’s so that he still gets game time
Skrtel is a really limited players in terms of technical ability but is probably good enough to play for one season, it’s likely I’ll look to replace him with a better technical player than him next summer
The kind of centre-back I’m looking for, able to pass and is pretty comfortable on the ball, will be an important player, especially in the build-up as his passing ability is key so the progression from the back is clean
Was signed for a lot of money but will be second choice, isn’t a very good defender unless he has an outright defensive midfielder in front of him(which I won’t usually be using), if Sakho or Skrtel gets injured he will be the man to come into the team though
Will be a good personality to have at the club and should make an excellent tutor ut won’t get too much game time
Will probably be used a back-up full-back(both right and left)but I will look to sign a first choice right back, has come under heavy criticism but I still see him as a player I could use, is decent technically and has good physical attributes which at times make up for his weak positioning and general intelligence on the pitch
Flanagan is injured for almost the whole of this season so obviously won’t see much game time this season however, following this I will keep him as a back-up full-back and may even consider retraining him as a centre-back with a view to playing as an outer centre-back in a back three in future
Despite only being recently signed, I will be terminating Manquillo’s loan as soon as I sign a new right-back, his attributes are pretty underwhelming and his loan will only limit the development of players owned by the club
Moreno will be my first choice left-back, is a player I imagine will excel in the diamond formation I will use as he will have the whole left flank to attack, will have to improve the defensive side of his game but I’m sure this will come with age
It’s pretty obvious Enrique is past his best so I will look to sell him for the benefit of both us and his career, however if I fail to sell him(I imagine this will be the case)I will give him some game time in the Capital One Cup as I feel it would be harsh to totally isolate him from first team football as he was a very good left-back at one point
Could become a key player under my management due to his versatility, will be perfect in a midfield diamond as he should be able to play any one of the roles in the diamond
Won’t see too much first team football, however he isn’t the worst back-up to have and his experience may make him a decent tutor, so I will keep him around for at least one season
Is obviously leaving the club at the end of this season, however I will make the most of his wonderful attributes in his final year. Will have to manage him carefully and rotate him wisely as his stamina is at just 10 now
Still not sure on my opinion of Henderson, his mentality and physicality really impresses me but I’m not convinced his technical attributes are good enough to be playing central-midfield in my passing game, I will be watching him closely in the first few months to see if he is able to nail down a place in starting 11
Impressed me massively at Swansea and that impression has stuck with me, so despite his poor form at Liverpool I’m still willing to give the guy a chance, could possibly thrive in my passing game if given enough protection in the defensive phase
One of my key players. Will look to build formations around him as he dictate the game and carve oppositions open, might not be able to hold onto him for more than a couple of seasons if he continues such wonderful form
Could become an unsung hero under my management, cost a hefty fee but I believe his versatility and well rounded attributes are something that I can definitely make the most of, will experiment with him on the wing, behind the striker and as an interior to find his best position, I may need to be patient but I’m sure Adam will come good
Another terrific young talent, despite naturally being a winger I think he will be able to play as a striker in the 4-4-2 diamond so I will retrain him as a striker, his pace combined with decent technical attributes are something which really excites me for a player of his age
May have a frustrating first season as Sterling, Lallana and Coutinho are all guaranteed starters for now, although if an injury comes up, Lazar may get his chance, will look to give him plenty of game time in the cups as he has big potential
The only under 21 player I feel is ready for first team football right now, there are other under 21’s who will be promoted to the first team(I’ll speak about this in my next article)but Ibe is the only one ready to play matches for the first team, really exciting player who I believe could turn into a key player in the future
Arguably my best player…when fit. Far too injury prone so will have to be managed extremely carefully or I risk losing him for extended periods of time, sadly, if Daniel’s injury record doesn’t improve I will be left with no choice but to cash in on him and buy a more reliable striker
Mario is another who I will have to manage very carefully, this time due to his attitude. If nurtured correctly, Balotelli could become one of the world’s best strikers, if not, he will fail. Mario will usually have a partner with him up front who will do his defensive work for him
Actually not too bad a player and can play up front, as well as either wing so is arguably worth keeping, but I feel selling him would be better for both parties
After taking a more in-depth look at the squad I’m actually pretty satisfied with it! Obviously I’m needing an addition or two but the depth of the squad isn’t the worst, and I believe it will strong enough to challenge for top four once I make the necessary signings. In my last article, you may remember I mentioned youth development quite a lot, and you’ll now say to yourself, so where are the promoted youth players? In my next article I’ll be talking about the youth players who’ve been promoted to the first team, as well as a look at our full pre-season and the hot topic, who we have signed! Again, keep your eyes peeled and regularly check here, and my Twitter (@boxtoboxcb) for the next article.
Cheers for reading again guys.