Sunday 4 December 2016

From Markovic to Mario – A Brendan Rodgers signings Liverpool XI

Published 05/10/2015 | 13:04

Kolo Toure
Kolo Toure

Departed Liverpool manager Brendan Rodgers had little choice but to recruit heavily during his three years in charge, but some of the purchasing decisions undoubtedly contributed to his downfall.

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Here is starting team made entirely of signings made under his stewardship an it does not make for pretty viewing for Liverpool fans.

Team: Mignolet; Cissokho, Toure, Lovren, Ilori; Alberto, Allen, Markovic; Aspas, Balotelli, Lambert

Goalkeeper

Simon Mignolet, £9m from Sunderland

Has steadied the ship somewhat after suffering a massive crisis of confidence last season. Still not entirely convincing behind an admittedly shaky defence. Not an improvement on Pepe Reina.

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Defenders

Aly Cissokho, LOAN from Valencia

Dubbed ‘comical Aly’ for his strange demeanour on the pitch, which gave the impression he would fall over every time he passed the ball. Was part of some excellent victories, but was a weak line in defence and not retained.

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Kolo Toure, free transfer from Manchester City

Did not cost the club a transfer fee, but has been error-prone throughout his time on Merseyside and reportedly on a  hefty wage.

Dejan Lovren, £20m from Southampton

The enduring signing perhaps of the Rodgers era. Easy to forget he was a commanding presence at the heart of the Southampton defence, has crumbled since his £20m move to the Reds.

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Tiago Ilori, £7m from Sporting Lisbon

One for the future’ they said about centre-back Ilori. Currently at Aston Villa, he is on his third loan spell away from the club and yet to make a single appearance.

Midfield

Luis Alberto, £6m from Sevilla

Currently on loan in La Liga, rumours have it he was signed on the back of his stats in Spain.

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Joe Allen, £15m from Swansea

The ‘Welsh Xavi’ as he was christened is a tidy, clever player but he has never looked capable of becoming world class.

Certainly not one of the worst signings, but his signature was indicative of the calibre of player Rodgers felt could turn Liverpool into a domestic force.

Lazar Markovic, £20m from Benfica

A total disaster. Chelsea had first option and ignored it. They have reaped the benefits at Liverpool’s cost.

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Forwards

Iago Aspas, £7m from Celta Vigo

Looked out of his depth from day one and was unsurprisingly loaned back to Spain after one season. Put Barcelona to the sword in a 4-1 victory over Barcelona recently, but never showed anything like that in a red shirt.

Mario Balotelli, £16m from AC Milan

Where to begin here. Replacing Luis Suarez was never going to be an easy, or possible task, but the former City striker just never got going at Anfield. Another 'last chance' blown by the controversial striker.

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Rickie Lambert, £4.5m from Southampton

It was supposed to be a dream move, with Lambert the ‘plan b’ from the bench. Never worked for yet another to make the switch from Southampton.

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