But what is distinctively lacking is a marquee signing which would excite the fans and in the process send out a message to the rest of the Premier League that Liverpool are taking it serious in their quest to try and reach the top four and qualify for the Champions League.
“The great name of Liverpool as a club and the history of the club dictate that we should be in the Champions League. There’s no other measure for us.” – Brendan Rodgers.
Rodgers has seen moves for Henrikh Mkhitaryan and Atletico Madrid forward Diego Costa fail to materialize this summer with Henrik joining Borussia Dortmund and Costa signing a new contract till 2018.
Will it be third time lucky? Anzhi Makhachkala’s Willian is the latest name to be linked with a move to Anfield, with the Reds rumoured to be bidding £30 million for the Samba star.
Willian Borges Da Silva was born in Ribeirão Pires, a little town in São Paulo. The 25 year old started his career with Corinthians and played with Javier Mascherano, Carlos Tevez and Nilmar during his time with Timao.
Following internal strife at the club and eventual relegation Willian signed for Shakhtar Donetsk in 2007 for €14 million joining compatriots Fernandinho, Brandao and Jadson at the Brazilian revolution in Donetsk.
During his time with the Ukrainian side he won four Ukrainian Premier League titles, three Ukrainian Cups, three Ukrainian Super Cups and one UEFA Cup. Playing out on the wing, Willian was an integral part of the Shakhtar side that won their first European silverware in 2009 after defeating Werder Bremen in the last ever UEFA Cup format final.
This January Willian joined the money revolution at Anzhi Makhachkala for a whopping €35 million, however the billionaire owner of the football club, Suleyman Kerimov, has embarked on a huge cost-cutting exercise with all of Anzhi’s squad, including Samuel Eto’o, effectively put up for sale.
Willian has played over 300 career games scoring 40 goals.
Style of play
He is?an attacking midfielder who offers strong passing and a goal threat coming in from the left hand side, occasionally he also plays as an out-and-out winger. Willian is relatively slight and small at 5-foot-8, but he has won fans for his two-footed ability, quick dribbling and occasional goal – remember the two he scored against Chelsea in the Champions League?
While researching I came across some very interesting statistics via transfermarkt.co.uk, Willian was involved in a goal (assisted or scored from) for the Russian side every 120 minutes. However his Champions League statistics make more impressive reading by being involved in a goal of every 75 minutes.
The capture of Willian would represent the eye-catching signing Rodgers has been seeking to make and his ability to play on either flank behind a main striker fits in with the manager’s blueprint.
Rodgers said at the weekend after the pre-season defeat to Celtic he wanted someone to play “top left” that would enable him to move Coutinho into a No.10 role behind Sturridge.
“Every time I get the chance I watch Liverpool. They are a very important club and a lot of players would jump at the chance to play for them.
“Despite all their problems they have a great chance to get back to the top of English football again.
“I remember watching their midfielder Lucas doing an interview for Sport TV in Brazil and he was showing a camera crew around.
“He spoke so highly about Anfield and we saw that the facilities behind the scenes are fantastic.” – Willian 2012
Could Willian be the final piece in Brendan’s jigsaw for 2013/2014 season?
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