Most fans’ attention remains focused on the World Cup, but meanwhile, clubs are quietly going about their business. Manchester United splashed out for Luke Shaw, Manchester City reinforced their squad with the signing of Fernando, and Liverpool … well, Liverpool are in pursuit of a whole host of players.
The Reds, looking to both compete for the Premier League title and to make a deep run in the Champions League, are doing their best to reinforce their already-talented squad (and, perhaps, to make up for the four-month absence of Luis Suárez). Liverpool opened their summer signings by bringing Rickie Lambert back to Anfield. Emre Can will complete his move from Bayer Leverkusen come July 1, and Adam Lallana’s transfer is expected to be finalized after he completes a medical.
That’s two midfielders and a striker thus far. But Liverpool aren’t yet through. Here’s a quick look at a few targets they’re hoping to hit:
The Croatia centerback returned all too quickly from the World Cup, where his primary claim to fame was being the man who nudged Fred, causing the forward to go down in a heap and prompting a penalty for Brazil. Lovren is, of course, another Southampton player. He joined the Saints just last season, moving from Lyon on a four-year deal. However, the 24-year-old has caught the eye of many a suitor, including Arsenal, so Liverpool could miss out.
The Reds are keen on the right-back – and most fans are likely to have had enough of Glen Johnson – but Sevilla are saying it isn’t going to happen. Apparently Liverpool’s £16m (~$27m) offer wasn’t nearly enough, especially now that Sevilla have really cashed in on Ivan Rakitić’s sale to Barcelona. Moreno has also said Sevilla is the “club of my life,” but that’s not likely to dissuade Liverpool from pursuing him.
Liverpool may have scored an absurd number of goals last season, but they’re still looking to add to their firepower. The young Marković would bring impressive pace to the squad, and he’s got a knack for a dribble. But considering he’s been at Benfica just one year, scoring five goals, should Liverpool take a risk on meeting his £20m (~$34m) release clause?
Romelu Lukaku has been a major disappointment at this World Cup, but that’s allowed yet another young, talented Belgian striker to step into the spotlight. Origi scored the late winner against Russia, keeping Belgium top of the group, and set up Jan Vertonghen’s winner against South Korea, when his low shot was spilled. Belgium are hoping to have a few more matches left at this World Cup, while Liverpool are eager for Origi to return home so they can open talks.