Discussing Liverpool’s logic with Rickie Lambert 3

This is a bit of a Devil’s advocate piece, because I’m not going to pretend to be a huge fan of this transfer - but I do understand the logic behind it.

Rickie Lambert will likely complete a move to Liverpool before leaving with the England squad for Brazil, and it’s clear what Brendan Rodgers is trying to do - diversify his forward line.  Rodgers was bitten badly by Chelsea’s reductive tactics at Anfield, and that’s probably prompted Liverpool to spend their Summer looking for a second approach to use against sides who don’t allow them to counter-attack.

Rickie Lambert is not Andy Carroll; his body shape may be similar but he’s not really comparable as a footballer.  He has targetman qualities, but he’s far more comfortable with the ball at his feet and is a better-fit for Liverpool’s ‘ball-on-the-ground’ philosophy than Carroll ever was or ever would have been.  Rodgers isn’t buying him for the sake of having a lumbering forward in reserve who can be the focal point of direct football - instead, he wants a front-man who can theoretically fit into the existing ideology but who also possesses a more physical threat than either Luis Suarez or Daniel Sturridge.

If Andy Carroll is the polar opposite of Sturridge and Suarez, then Lambert exists somewhere in between those two points.

It’s actually not as shocking a move as many believe it to be, but the fee is a concern and Lambert’s age make it a bit underwhelming.  That doesn’t make it a bad transfer, because Liverpool are acquiring a short-term benefit - but maybe there was a more economic deal to be made elsewhere?

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