LIVERPOOL, ENGLAND - Saturday, October 25, 2014: Liverpool's manager Brendan Rodgers and Mario Balotelli against Hull City during the Premier League match at Anfield. (Pic by David Rawcliffe/Propaganda)

“Completely ludicrous”, “absolutely shambolic” – journalist slams Liverpool’s transfer strategy

It will be a surprise if Mario Balotelli is still a Liverpool player next season, according to journalist Chris Bascombe.

LIVERPOOL, ENGLAND - Saturday, October 25, 2014: Liverpool's manager Brendan Rodgers and Mario Balotelli against Hull City during the Premier League match at Anfield. (Pic by David Rawcliffe/Propaganda)

The Telegraph‘s north west football reporter was speaking on the Anfield HQ podcast, giving his opinion on various Liverpool-related matters.

Bascombe did not hold back on his opinion of Balotelli, as well as numerous other topics, and believes the Italian will no longer be a Reds player beyond the summer.

“I have nothing to say about him really; I’ll be glad when he’s gone.” he said.

“He’s done nothing. I’ll be surprised if he’s still at the club next season, although it might be easier said than done getting rid of him.”

Bascombe also gave his verdict on James Milner and Danny Ings, saying he believes a truly top-class player needs to come in too if last season’s errors are to be eradicated.

“I’ll be surprised if Milner and Ings don’t become Liverpool players, and I don’t think they would be bad deals”, he continued.

“Milner is a very underrated player and Ings will be a better alternative to what Liverpool currently have in attack.

“These have to be complemented by bigger deals though. Not signing Alexis Sanchez was the moment they let Arsenal stroll past them last summer. We’ll never know how different this season would have been [had he signed for Liverpool].

“Clearly they [Liverpool] need a top striker this summer, there’s no question about that. Look at how many games they went into this season without a striker. It caught up with them in the end.

“If Rodgers is still in charge in August, he has to have a definite system and players that can fit into it. Not the other way round.”

Football - FA Cup - Semi-Final - Everton FC v Liverpool FC

Bascombe’s next point was also in relation to that missed chance last summer. He feels Liverpool spent the Luis Suarez money in completely the wrong way.

“I don’t think anyone could believe, despite how brilliant Suarez was, that the disintegration of the team would be so dramatic and swift.

“Look at how the money has been spent though. Look at the squad now and it makes you worry about the future.

“If you have £115m to spend, you can either go and compete with the elite clubs, or you can start targeting players who Aston Villa and Everton might be looking at.

“The club’s argument was that you don’t need to buy three players worth £40m or £50m each, get seven cheaper players instead. That theory has proved to be completely ludicrous.

“They would have been better off buying three top players and just going for it in the league again. Instead, they didn’t compete in any competitions.

“They put all their focus on Sanchez, then went shuffling to get [Loic] Remy but said he was unfit, and then sent an SOS across Europe for a striker, ending up with Balotelli- a player Rodgers said he would never work with two weeks earlier. It was absolutely shambolic.”

STOKE-ON-TRENT, ENGLAND - Sunday, May 24, 2015: Liverpool's captain Steven Gerrard applauds the supporters as he walks off after his final game for the club, a 6-1 defeat to Stoke City, during the Premier League match at the Britannia Stadium. (Pic by David Rawcliffe/Propaganda)

Finally, Bascombe spoke candidly about the club’s need to do better in the transfer market and their general ambition, as well as Steven Gerrard‘s premature Liverpool exit.

“There need to be changes to the committee. Something huge has to change. Maybe a lightbulb will have to go off and they’ll say ‘maybe it’s about time we made a statement’.

“This is meant to be Liverpool Football Club, not Villa; a former great club. Let’s not be so defeatist and be trod on by Aidy Ward and people. Sort it out and change something. Use this great name that Liverpool still have.

“It winds me up that Steven is going at all. Why didn’t Liverpool offer him to LA Galaxy on loan? Play as much football as you can over there, promote the club and then see what state you are in to contribute to us.

“Why are we letting the modern incarnation of Liverpool Football Club leave? Are people threatened or something? It’s just ridiculous.

“It depresses me that players like Gerrard and [Jamie] Carragher were allowed to leave, when there are other players staying who don’t know what they’re doing.”

Do you agree with Chris Bascombe’s strong remarks? Let us know in the comments below.