John Aldridge bemoans Reds lack of firepower ahead of crunch week

Games against Basel, Manchester United and Bournemouth could define the Reds' season.

Liverpool legend John Aldridge has said it is a crunch week for the club as they face three huge games in three different competitions.

The Reds have a must-win game against Basel to qualify for the knockout stages of the Champions League before they travel to Manchester United in the Premier League on Sunday, and then Bournemouth in the quarter finals of the League Cup the following Wednesday.

Liverpool have been struggling for goals of late which led to a revival in their season being halted with a 0-0 draw at home to Sunderland in the Premier League at the weekend, something which Aldridge has voiced concern about.

He wrote in his Liverpool Echo column: "Rickie Lambert is doing a decent job but he’s an old fashioned forward. He needs service where last season the likes of Luis Suarez and Daniel Sturridge could make something happen on their own.

"Fabio Borini hasn’t even made the bench recently and I find that strange. If something had happened to Lambert who would have played up front? With it being Sunderland, Borini would have been worth a go."

Aldridge said this is the biggest eight days of Brendan Rodgers managerial career - where losing the three games mentioned could leave their season in tatters. A win in all three however would be 'light at the end of the tunnel' according to the former Liverpool marksman.

"If we can get through to the last 16 of the Champions League, get a result against Manchester United which keeps us in touch with them in the race for the top four and then progress to the semis of the League Cup we’ll be in a position to really kick on.

"It’s a huge night for the club because having worked so hard to get back into the Champions League going out in the group stage would be a big disappointment."

Qualification from the group tonight would represent one of the main objectives achieved that was reportedly set by the club's owners at the start of the season. The other is to achieve qualification by finishing in the top four this season.

But wins in all three games would set Liverpool up nicely to achieve both the ambitions of the hierachy and the manager himself. Beating Bournemouth would take the club a giant step closer to Rodgers winning his first trophy at Anfield.

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