A complete evaluation Liverpool’s squad will be made this summer after a season of bad form and the club’s owners, Fenway Sports Group, will no doubt oversee this process.
Since purchasing the club in October 2010, the American owners have made clear their intention to buy young and invest in the club’s future by lowering the average age of the squad.
So we’ve sent the This Is Anfield Scouts around Europe to find the cream of the crop – just a few of the players Liverpool could, arguably should, be looking to bring to Anfield this summer.
Eden Hazard (Lille)
This much hyped Belgian attacker has been linked with the Reds for a while, but also attracted the interest of other Premier League clubs including Arsenal. The Lille playmaker has been playing with Liverpool’s Joe Cole in Ligue 1 this season, but is strongly tipped to leave the club this summer. He could be the perfect replacement for Liverpool for Dirk Kuyt, who has been strongly linked with a move away from Merseyside at the end of the current campaign.
Granit Xhaka (Basel)
19 year old midfielder Xhaka is another much-hyped youngster, currently on the books at Swiss side Basel. He is a hot prospect, offering height and pace as well as a very clever game. He has already won 6 caps for his country. Could Xhaka be a future Steven Gerrard, or provide a pacey alternative to Charlie Adam?
Impressing for Steve McLaren’s FC Twente in the Dutch league is Brazilian centre-back Douglas. It is understood Douglas is unsettled in Holland and is eyeing a move to the Premier League. At 24, could he be the man to step into Jamie Carragher’s boots? Douglas posseses great strength and a towering height at 6ft 4inches. He is yet to play for Brazil, and is now eligable to be called up for the Netherlands at international level.
Yann M’Vila (Rennes)
A very high quality defensive midfielder, but that high quality has already attracted attention elsewhere and Liverpool could be embroiled in a price war with the likes of heavyweights Inter Milan for the signature of this 21-year-old. The French international boasts a very physical game of football and could slot in nicely next to, or on rotation, with the returning Lucas Leiva from injury at Anfield. He’s won 18 caps for France and is a hot name in French football.
Nicolas Gaitan (Benfica)
Could Liverpool be on the lookout for another winger? Or will they put all their confidence in Stewart Downing. There would need to be a substantial sum offered to tempt 24-year-old Argentinian international Gaitan from Benfica. The likes of Manchester Utd and Barcelona are thought to have expressed an interest too. He signed for Benfica for €8.4million in 2010.