Liverpool latest: Brazilian playmaker linked with transfer - again

Raheem Sterling

All the latest news, views and transfer rumours from Anfield...

Liverpool's disappointing campaign continued on Saturday, as Chelsea left Merseyside with all three points, defeating Brendan Rodgers' men 2-1.

It was another frustrating afternoon for Raheem Sterling, with the England international still not quite hitting his stride just yet. Now with the international break upon us, Rodgers needs to take the time to figure out what Liverpool's issues are, and Sterling is confident that the Reds will bounce back when league football resumes.

"After a defeat you usually want the next game to come along fast but I think having this break now can help us. We need to get going after the international break and start winning games to turn this around. Losing hurts, especially losing a big game at home. Every team goes through sticky patches but I'm sure we'll start climbing the table soon."

Another player who has struggled to make an impact this season is striker Mario Balotelli. The Italian was signed as the replacement for Luis Suarez this summer, but Liverpool legend John Aldridge says he's 'baffled' by Rodgers' use of the former Manchester City man.

"For me – and I played most of my career leading the line as a lone striker – Balotelli looks out of place, he looks uncomfortable. He doesn’t know where to run, or when to run, in that role," he said.

"As a striker you’ve got to isolate your centre-backs, you’ve got to get on their shoulders, work them and peel off them and get in behind the back-four. You also create space for your team-mates with that movement, but Mario doesn’t know what to do. So I’m a little bit baffled Brendan has persisted with that," added Aldridge.

Meanwhile, the January transfer window is fast approaching, and speculation is continuing to link with a move to sign Hoffenheim's Brazilian playmaker Roberto Firmino.

The 23-year-old racked up 16 goals and 12 assists in the Bundesliga last season, and with three goals and three assists this term, he's earned a call-up to the Brazil squad - and reports suggest that Rodgers is looking to bring him to Merseyside despite interest from Chelsea and Manchester United.

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