Liverpool must pay the right price for Lallana

The Southampton midfielder has excelled this season but a summer move for his services could be a risk not worth taking for the Reds.

It is fair to say that Adam Lallana has enjoyed a very impressive campaign for the Saints culminating with his inclusion in the PFA Team of the Year.

Winning his first cap for England on 15 November 2013 against Chile however was probably the high point, but the classy performances he has sustained since then have now turned Liverpool manager Brendan Rodgers' head according to reports.

While Lallana is clearly a talented player there are conflicting opinions among Liverpool fans that his signing will either be an astute one or a complete disaster.

What counts in Lallana's favour is the fact that he now has experience of the Premier League so would not need time adjusting as opposed to a player coming in from abroad. He has shown that he can handle its physical challenges and still flourish.

What's more, he has scored nine goals from midfield, highlighting that his contribution to the team is tangible. In other words Lallana has lessened the goalscoring burden on forwards Ricky Lambert and Jay Rodriguez and could similarly do the same for Daniel Sturridge and Luis Suarez.

He possesses skill and intelligence in abundance. Playing under Southampton boss Mauricio Pochettino, who asks his players to press constantly whenever they are without the ball, will make Lallana a perfect fit for Rodgers who employs similar tactics.

Nevertheless the key sticking point is that at nearly 26-years-old and a fee rumoured to be in the region of £25 million he would not appear to represent good value for money.

Despite the advantages outlined above there are other players who would come both younger and cheaper yet probably do just as good a job as the England international. Hoffenheim's Roberto Firmino and Inter Milan's Mateo Kovacic just two possible alternatives.

Lallana plays off the left and likes to drift inside, at which point he functions just like a number 10. Lest we forget but a certain Philippe Coutinho already does that for Liverpool. But the idea of course is Rodgers is adding depth to his squad to meet the challenges of next season and with it Champions League football.

So the argument that Lallana's potential presence could stunt Coutinho's development is a non-starter. In fact the extra competition he would bring means the little Brazilian has no choice but to improve his performances.

Admittedly English players will come at a premium so this may explain Lallana's high price but if Liverpool could somehow get him for say, £15 million, then the transfer is a no brainer. Anything above and the Reds should steer clear. Though the two players are incomparable, Liverpool paid £20 million for Steward Downing and do not want a repeat.

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