Post columnist has his say on the summer saga
Liverpool, like their neighbours, are in something of a state of flux right now.
When they did so much business early in the transfer window, it appeared they had learned the lessons of last summer.
But since then, the Luis Suarez situation has overshadowed everything.
And the subsequent lack of new arrivals and the Uruguayan’s desire to leave have underlined one thing.
Having no Champions League football is really hurting Liverpool.
Looking at their squad at present, would you say it has enough to finish in the top four?
You’d have to say it hasn’t.
In pictures: Suarez saga in quotes
Liverpool need new quality players to get into the Champions League. But they are struggling to attract such players... because they aren’t in the Champions League.
It’s a vicious circle.
All the teams around Liverpool have strengthened, and they are going to be strengthened even further between now and the transfer window closing on September 2.
This was always going to be a big summer for Brendan Rodgers, and he’s hit something of a stumbling block.
Yes, he has had to balance the books a bit –probably a bit more than he expected – but surely the last thing Rodgers will want is to have a transfer surplus but with nobody worth spending it on.
Now there is a danger Liverpool may not have enough players. Stewart Downing has gone, while there is interest in Daniel Agger from Barcelona.
It looks like Agger will stay put. But could anybody blame him if he left? There are a few clubs throughout the world who fans would accept losing a player to, and one is Barcelona. Arsenal is not. Take note, Suarez.
Defeat to Celtic in Dublin last Saturday wasn’t the best preparation for the season opener against Stoke City, and was something of a wake-up call.
But every Premier League manager knows it is impossible to replicate a top-flight match in any friendly. Indeed, the minute you attach the word ‘friendly’ to a match, everyone knows what that represents.
Iago Aspas was a bit lightweight against Celtic, but it is still early days for him. I saw him against Preston earlier in pre-season, and he looked decent.
The Premier League, though, is completely different. We’ll know a lot more about Aspas amd Liverpool come 2.45pm on Saturday afternoon.