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Three more ideal attacking transfer targets for Liverpool

With the transfer window drawing to a close Brendan Rodgers and Liverpool are still hoping to fill the void left by the departure of 2013/14 PFA Player of the Season, Luis Suarez.

As the Uruguayan international becomes a distant memory of the past, the Reds will seek to prove they are capable of succeeding without his talents at their disposal.

Liverpool are undoubtedly going to miss Suarez’s creative prowess, as well as his ability to find the back of the net, and while the acquisition of both Lazar Markovic and Adam Lallana has gone some way to replacing these attributes, but the Anfield faithful recognize the need for further additions.

Furthermore, with summer signing Rickie Lambert the only player likely to provide backup to Daniel Sturridge, the need for Rodgers to add some serious fire-power to his squad is patently obvious,

The club are already nearing the signature of AC Milan striker Mario Balotelli, with BBC Sport reporting an agreement has been reached between the two clubs, but can the controversial Azzurri hit-man carry the burden of Suarez's departure without further assistance? 

This article will highlight three forwards who, based on the statistics, would make ideal signings for the Merseyside club.

Max Kruse

In terms of replacing the creative void left by Suarez’s departure, Brendan Rodgers should look no further than Borussia Monchengladbach’s Max Kruse. The German winger fashioned an incredible 97 chances for his club team-mates last season, assisting a total nine goals.

  TeamPosGoalsShot Conversion (%) AssistsChances CreatedAppsMins
Luis Suarez Liverpool FW 31 17.13 12 87 33 2,964
Max Kruse M'Gladbach FW 12 18.50 9 97 34 3,017

Kruse is an incredibly mobile deep-lying forward with a fondness for a pass, he achieved an 83% completion rate last season, and similar to his potential predecessor, his impressive vision on the field sets him aside from your more orthodox run-of-the-mill strikers.

However, it isn’t just his creative ability that catches the eye. In fact, he found the back of the net on 12 occasions himself last term, finishing 18.5% of his chances.

While one may argue for Suarez’s 31 goals in comparison with Kruse’s season tally, each player’s individual conversion rates must be taken into consideration. Since the Uruguayan’s recorded a hit-rate of 20.4% last term, the duo are more similar than first thought.

Wilfried Bony

If the Liverpool boss is purely in the market for a goal scoring centre-forward, Swansea’s Wilfried Bony is the ideal purchase. The Ivorian international poached 16 league efforts for the Welsh outfit last term, providing a huge boost to his side’s hopes of avoiding relegation.

  TeamGoalsShot Conversion (%)Total ShotsAppsMins
Luis Suarez Liverpool 31 17.13 181 33 2,964
Olivier Giroud Arsenal 16 14.29 112 36 3,081
Wilfried Bony Swansea 16 14.81 108 34 2,472
Daniel Sturridge Liverpool 21 21.21 99 29 2,275

He averaged the third highest shots total in the Premier League (108 attempts), with only Suarez and Arsenal’s Olivier Giroud managing more strikes at goal throughout the season.

Nonetheless, he successfully converted 17.6% of these opportunities, to record a very respectable end-of-term tally. Considering he has only made the move to the club 10 months earlier, this was no mean feat.

After offering Swansea £12.5million for Bony in July, Rodgers is expected to return with a bid closer to £16million in the near future. While the player’s wages could prove a stumbling block, the Reds should be confident in completing a deal.

There’s no question regarding the fact he is good enough to play for one of the league’s top sides.

Giuseppe Rossi

Giuseppe Rossi would represent more of a gamble for the Anfield outfit, considering his long history of injury problems. However, his lack of game time throughout the past few seasons could mean he is happy to start life at the club from the bench.

  GoalsGoals per 90Shot Conversion (%)Mins
Daniel Sturridge 21 0.72 21.21 2,275
Luis Suarez 31 0.94 17.13 2,964
Giuseppe Rossi 16 0.95 34.80 1,516

The Italian forward scored 0.95 goals every 90 minutes last term, scoring more regularly than both Sturridge and Suarez. He hit 16 strikes in 22 Serie A appearances despite spending large parts of the campaign as a spectator from the sidelines.

Despite injuries threatening to derail a very promising career, the Azzurri hitman has continue to bite back and prove his worth, and when fully fit he has always found the back of the net with alarming regularity. Considering he converted 34.8% of his total opportunities last season, he is a centre-forward who means business.

Rossi also contributed with 25 key passes, assisting three goals – a small fraction of Suarez’s efforts, but a respectable tally nonetheless.

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