Dejan Lovren failed to make an impression in his first season with Liverpool, even being ridiculed as one of the worst transfers of the season. It looks like he’ll be staying though and it’s not surprising given how much Liverpool paid for the defender.
With the majority of the money from Suarez’s sale going on the purchase of Southampton’s squad, Brendan Rodgers and his new team failed to build upon the success of their previous season and have found themselves having to re-invest again this summer.
When Lovren wasn’t tripping up over his own feet, or Lallana missing open goals, Liverpool could rely on Mignolet to make a mistake in goal. Former poster boy Raheem Sterling has moved on to what he describes as ‘bigger and better things’ whilst Anfield favourite, Stevie G, has packed his bags for the states to live the high life in LA.
So as the new season dawns, it promises to be another campaign of change for the Merseysiders. Rodgers has already brought in Ings, Benteke and Milner who have all proven their worth in the Premier League but as the past suggests, even the most reliable players can turn out to be a flop…
And transfer flops Liverpool have had in numbers. Here’s five of their worst.
When current England manager, Roy Hodgson was brought to Melwood in 2010, everybody thought he’d be the guy to level things out for Liverpool. However, he proved to be a disastrous staff appointment and one of his most notorious signings was his former colleague, Paul Konchesky, from Fulham.
His performances at Craven Cottage were never mirrored at Liverpool, and the left-back was yet again a defensive disappointment for the Reds – who have struggled to fill the role since the departure of John Arne Riise, who coincidentally went to Fulham himself.
Konchesky arrived as part of a deal which saw reserve duo Lauri Dalla Valle and Alex Kacaniklic move in the other direction. Ironically, the latter became a full Swedish international whilst Konchesky failed to make any impression at all at Liverpool.
Although the fee was believed to be no more than £4m, the defender didn’t last long in a red shirt and when Hodgson was deservedly given the sack a year later, he quickly followed.
In 2008, Republic of Ireland veteran Robbie Keane packed his bags and headed up from London to join Rafa Benitez at Liverpool. It seemed a match in heaven – a proven goalscorer at Spurs and a life-long Liverpool fan – but that was simply not the case.
£19m later and several pain-stakingly bad performances from Keane eventually confirmed his status as an Anfield flop. It took the striker 11 games to score his first goal and he only managed a total of seven in 28 appearances for the club.
He was that bad that only months after joining Liverpool, he was shipped back to White Hart Lane on loan in January 2009. £19m well spent? Not at all.
Another signing who failed to live up to expectation came in the same summer as Konchesky, in Roy Hodgson’s unconvincing attempt to transform Liverpool. Joe Cole was another English player who never lived up to his potential and he was a complete flop at Anfield.
Liverpool secured his signature on a free transfer, but his wages were extremely high for somebody who spent the majority of his time on the bench or in the treatment room. When he was on the pitch, he was either sent off – on his debut against Arsenal – or was simply invisible.
When Dalglish replaced Hodgson as manager, he shipped the creative midfielder off to Lille on loan for the 2011-12 season where he was forgotten, until he returned briefly under Rodgers in 2012 simply due to low squad numbers.
However, after 42 appearances, most of them completely forgettable, and only five goals to his name, the former West Ham player returned to his first club in January 2013. All-in-all, Joe Cole’s career never really panned out the way everyone expected.
It’s tough to decide whether Stewart Downing or Charlie Adam was the bigger flop for Liverpool between 2011 and 2012 when Kenny Dalglish’s genius turned to insanity. The Aston Villa winger had always been an ever-present in his team’s side and was by no means a bad player. However, the decision to spend £18.5m on an English winger, who was only ever considered ‘average’ was completely crazy.
In his first season, the winger failed to record a goal and even more shockingly, a single assist in his 36 appearances – something that nobody failed to point out. His second season was better, but he never came close to fulfilling his price tag and in the summer of 2013, Brendan Rodgers decided it was time to offload the uninspiring midfielder.
Since making the move back to West Ham, he’s done well and has now gone back to where it all began with Middlesbrough, but he and Liverpool were just a relationship that was never meant to be.
Is there a bigger or more obvious flop than Andy Carroll? The giant striker, who was brought for £35m from Newcastle in January 2011, was one of the biggest transfers in the last decade.
However, it turned out to be a complete disaster for the club when the frontman turned out to be, well, completely useless. After fans enjoyed Fernando Torres’ talent the season previous, it was a huge disappointment when one of England’s most exciting young prospects completely faltered at a big club.
After injury delayed his entrance to the Anfield stage, he only notched up two goals in his debut season – both coming in the same game against Manchester City. In the 2011-12 season he only managed nine goals in 47 appearances and as soon as Rodgers came to Liverpool, he was loaned out to West Ham – note the theme of Liverpool flops going to West Ham.
It was disappointing to see the fall of what seemed like a great talent, but when you consider Liverpool paid less for Luis Suarez, it’s clear £35m was a complete waste of money. Andy Carroll is perhaps unofficially, the worst Liverpool signing ever.