The reasons why Liverpool wouldn't give up on signing Lallana

Adam Lallana

It felt like a lengthy pursuit as Liverpool have tried to get their transfer business done early, but it's a pursuit that Brendan Rodgers will feel is worthwhile.

Liverpool look set to complete the transfer of Adam Lallana from Southampton after the midfielder was on Merseyside on Friday to have a medical - with a fee of around £25 million said to have been agreed between the two clubs, and (at the time of writing) expected to be completed on Monday.

Lallana was one of the top transfer targets outlined by Brendan Rodgers this summer as he looks to build a side capable of kicking on from their second place finish from last season in the Premier League, and their return to the Champions League for the first time since 2009. 

Initially the Reds met some stern resistance from the Saints as one of their prized assets, and influential individuals, expressed his desire to play Champions League football. There was some difference on the valuation of the player at first as the Reds hoped to get a deal done before the World Cup but with England's participation ending at the group stages, no time has been wasted upon their return from Brazil when it comes to Lallana's future.

Judging by the past couple of transfer windows, it looked as though the valuation of the player could be too much of a sticking point for the club to up their offer.

Last season, the midfielder scored nine league goals and played in every one of Southampton's Premier League games as they finished in an impressive eighth place in the table. 

So, why was Brendan Rodgers keen to land the 26-year-old?

One of the main reasons is his versatility given that he can play across the midfield and support the front men. Liverpool have Philippe Coutinho and Raheem Sterling as the two men who would probably be Lallana's two main competitors for a role in the side. But his versatility allows for the manager to play a system that would suit a certain game-plan. Having a player who can play in different roles and different systems can be invaluable to a side.

Following on from that is the kind of football that he is accustomed to playing. Having flourished under Mauricio Pochettino playing a high-pressing game, one would think it shouldn't be a problem for the Englishman to adapt to the style of player undertaken by Brendan Rodgers.

  TeamPosGoal AssistGoalsBig Chance CreatedAppsMins
Philippe Coutinho Liverpool MF 7 5 13 33 2,334
Adam Lallana Southampton MF 6 9 5 38 3,100
Raheem Sterling Liverpool FW 5 9 11 33 2,218

Then there is his creativity in the final third. Though the statistics above show there are areas where Sterling and Coutinho have outperformed Lallana, it must be remembered just how prolific Liverpool were going forward - having scored 101 goals compared to Southampton's 54, Lallana's statistics don't look out of place compared to the two players who were donning Liverpool shirts last season - and inevitably, the club will want to see Lallana's statistics to improve.

There are other things. One only needs to look at Liverpool's options from the bench last season to see that there is a need for some strengthening. Looking at their defeat to Chelsea towards the end of last season in the run-in during the title race, their options were an unfit Daniel Sturridge, and an unimpressive Iago Aspas. Without doubt, the signing of Lallana would improve Liverpool's options to change the game, as it is likely at least one of Lallana, Sterling or Coutinho will operate from the bench during some games this season. 

Some eyebrows will be raised at the fee. Some will say £25 million is too expensive. But if Lallana improves the Liverpool squad, and demonstrates his excellent technical ability, awareness and ends up helping Liverpool win games, and shining in big moments, talk of that fee will die down very quickly.

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