Transfer news: 'There is more to spend' reveals Brendan Rodgers, but keeping Luis Suarez is the main priority for Liverpool
Rodgers will not waste transfer budget on unnecessary buys but says if the right quality becomes available he still has the money to sign them
Thursday 01 August 2013
Liverpool manager Brendan Rodgers has admitted that he still has money to spend to improve the squad, but has stressed that he will not waste it on unnecessary impulse buys.
Rodgers has already bought four new faces at an estimated cost of £25m, although this figure is offset by the sale of players such as Andy Carroll, who joined West Ham for around £15m, and Jonjo Shelvey who moved to Swansea for £6m.
However, his biggest task remains holding onto star striker Luis Suarez with Arsenal still interested in bringing in the Uruguayan having seen a £40m-plus-£1 bid turned down.
But with the transfer saga surrounding Suarez taking a breather this week, Rodgers has shed some light on whether Reds’ fans can expect more arrivals at Anfield.
"They have to be of the right quality, that's the bottom line," he said.
"We've got money to spend on getting that quality in but if it's not available I won't waste it for the sake of bringing a player in.
"We're really working hard to bring in the type of profile that can really help us push on.”
Rodgers is happy with his work so far though having signed Sunderland goalkeeper Simon Mignolet for £9m, Celta Vigo midfielder Iago Aspas for £7m, Sevilla striker Luis Alberto for an undisclosed fee and former Manchester City defender Kolo Toure, who joined after his contract at the Etihad expired.
"All of the new boys have settled in really well," he told LFC TV.
"Simon Mignolet has been first-class. He has shown that he is one of the top young goalkeepers in European football.
“I think he will prove over the next coming years at Liverpool that he is a top goalkeeper.
"Kolo Toure speaks for himself - his experience and his fitness has been first-class since he came in and he's a really good man.
"That was the idea of bringing him in, because of his winning mentality and his personality.
"Iago has settled in well and got a few goals in pre-season, which is great for his confidence. He's a livewire in and around the box.
"Luis Alberto is obviously still young but has shown the qualities, technically, and has got a strong mentality.
"I think we can see early on that he can end up being a very good player for Liverpool."
Rodgers also remains keen on developing youth at the club, having worked as youth coach at Chelsea before he took over at Watford earlier in his career.
"Some of the young players have been brilliant on the (pre-season) trip, the likes of young Raheem Sterling," said the Reds boss.
"He has reminded me of what he was last summer, but he has got a little bit more personality now he has had a year's experience. At 18, he has looked really good.
"Young Jordon Ibe, for 17 years of age, the talk before we came over was that he might need to get experience at a lower level just to get used to playing in front of crowds.
"Well, he's not going to play in front of many more than 83,000 and 95,000 so we come back knowing he can play in front of crowds.
"The players have the opportunity every single day to show that desire to be in the team.
"There's always room there for people to force their way into the team.
"We finished strongly at the end of last season and it's important to build on that. It's a team that's improving and progressing, but still always with room to improve."
Liverpool captain Steven Gerrard insists that losing Suarez would a massive set-back for the club, and he hopes to see the striker remain with the club.
Speaking to The Independent, he said: "Where we sit actually right now (outside the top four), it all depends on what decision Luis Suarez makes in the next few weeks. If we lose him then the challenge becomes even more difficult. It's that simple.
"If he goes to Arsenal, it obviously makes our season that little bit more difficult.
"It strengthens them an awful lot and they are our rivals for a top-four position. From the club's point of view it doesn't make sense at all, no matter how much money is put on the table.
"If he was to go abroad to a Madrid or Barcelona I would totally understand it. He's a South American. He's good enough to play in either of those teams.
"If I was him I would wait for one of those two clubs because I think he's good enough to play for them."
The England captain also admitted that he has been doing his best to persuade Suarez to stay with the club that he joined back in 2011, but understands that it is his own decision to make.
"I've spoken to Luis loads and of course I'm trying to get him to stay," he told the Liverpool Echo.
"We will have to wait and see if I have any joy.
It's a difficult one from a team-mate's perspective as you've got to show a player respect.
"Luis is his own guy and makes his own decisions. But Luis Suarez knows what I want him to do, don't worry about that."
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