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Five Potential Replacements For Luis Suarez

?????????At the end of May I posted an article on Irish News Review about Luis Suarez plotting his exit from Liverpool, but who knew that ten weeks later the Uruguayan would still be in the middle of one of the longest transfer sagas to date.

At the time of writing the previous piece I was already resigned to losing Suarez as were a lot of other Liverpool fans. At this stage I’d guess that a lot of those fans wish he had of just left then to save us all from the endless Twitter rumours and all this ‘he said, they said’ that’s been going on ever since.

At the moment, the controversial striker who has been the subject of two failed bids from Arsenal is training alone at Melwood while the rest of the first team are working hard in preparation for this Saturday’s Premier League opener with Stoke City.

The Anfield club continuously state, from the dugout to the boardroom, that their star player will not be sold this summer and Brendan Rodgers has said he could select Suarez again once his ban is over and he has apologised to the club and his team-mates.

But if that apology does not come, which isn’t the most unlikeliest scenario , then it would be foolish of Liverpool to have a €50million striker rotting in their reserves. In my opinion, if the South American does not change his mind, then the club have to sell him, and replace him as adequately as they can.

But who’s out there to replace him? Every summer a couple of big name strikers move about in Europe and this summer has already seen Falcao, Higuain, Tevez, Llorente and Cavani switch clubs within Europe not to mention Neymar joining Barcelona.

Here we pick out five players that Liverpool could possibly look at if they do decide to grant Suarez his wish and let him leave.

costa

1: Diego Costa

Just as one passionate, fiery, controversial striker could be leaving Anfield; another could be the man they want to replace him.

Liverpool have already had a bid rejected for Diego Costa but if Suarez does go and more money is available then an improved offer could be submitted for the Atletico Madrid striker.

With only 10 goals in La Liga last season he is not as prolific as Suarez but he played most of the season out wide due to Falcao’s presence up front. However, he had a shot conversion rate of 26.3% compared to Suarez’s 12.2%, Gareth Bale’s 15.8% and Robin Van Persie’s 22.0%.

A more worrying stat however is this. In just over 160 games in Spain he has 59 yellow and 7 red cards to his name.

walcott

 

2: Theo Walcott

I only really see Walcott as a possible target if Arsenal are the club who land Suarez and at the moment, they seem the only one interested.

The Englishman has made no secret of his desire to play regularly as a centre forward and not a winger. With the (possible) arrival of Suarez, the earlier summer signing of Yaya Sanogo, the experience of Lukas Podolski and the pre-season form of Olivier Giroud, Walcott’s chances of leading the Arsenal line could be few and far between.

That’s not the say he won’t be wanted. He is a key man for Arsenal these days but primarily out-wide which he doesn’t like.

In a World Cup year when players want to look their best where they feel their best, could Walcott become a part of a cash-plus-player deal?

Wayne Rooney

 

3. Wayne Rooney 

Before you slam your laptop shut, hear me out on this one.

The player quite obviously wants to leave Manchester United; the reasons for this are a bit unknown as Rooney has not been as ‘vocal’ as Suarez. It may possibly be that (having previously complained about a lack of signings after Ronaldo’s departure) Rooney does not want to be Robin Van Persie’s understudy.

Having being dropped for a couple of big games last season and playing midfield frequently, it seems the Scouser needs to  feel more ‘wanted’ as a striker. David Moyes comments earlier in the summer saying they need Wayne if RVP gets injured certainly did not help that.

It has already been said in the press that Rooney’s family will not move abroad so if he’s going to move it needs to be in England. United seem very reluctant to sell to Chelsea who are stronger rivals for the title than Liverpool at the moment.

He has had ‘incidents’ with the Anfield crowd before, which is expected having been a star at Everton and United, but football fans can be fickle and Rooney is an honest player and honest fans appreciate his style of play.

Could this summer see Rooney move back to Merseyside?

muriel

 

4: Luis Muriel

I did not know much of this Columbian until this summer but recently I have heard and read lots of rumours saying Liverpool had been keeping tabs on him.

Aged 22, he was awarded Serie A’s Young Player of the Year in 2012 and found the net 11 times in 22 league games last year for Udinese. He’s been compared to (the Brazilian) Ronaldo in regards to his style of play but he’s not a million miles away from him in his appearance either.

Manchester United are also rumoured to be interested in acquiring his services so it would probably take something special to lure him to Anfield.

yilmaz

 

5. Burak Yilmaz 

This Galatasary striker was linked with a move to Stamford Bridge earlier this season when the recently returned Jose Mourinho labelled him as a world class player who could “play for any team in the world.”

The Turk has been prolific in his own country so far and bagged 24 goals in 30 league appearances last season and has scored 56 in his last 60 games altogether which is quite remarkable.

Galatasary’s President Ünal Aysal has already admitted the club would sell Yilmaz for the right price, which is believed to be in excess of €25million.

The player was crucial in his clubs journey to the Champions League quarter-finals last season by scoring eight goals in the tournament altogether , including 6 in consecutive games in the group stages. This may be enough to show that he can score goals outside the Turkish League.

Of course there are countless others you may think would be better to replace Suarez at Anfield, if he does leave, so feel free to have your say below.

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