€30m Liverpool target Balde Keita potentially available; but does Rodgers really need him?

SS Lazio fans

Lazio are reportedly willing to sell Liverpool target Keita Balde Diao.

Liverpool forked out over £100m on new signings this summer, and whilst it hasn't worked out at all for manager Brendan Rodgers so far, he did miss out on one of his main targets.

Whilst attacking additions were made in the form of Adam Lallana, Lazar Markovic, Mario Balotelli and Rickie Lambert, Rodgers also saw a bid rejected for Lazio teenager Keita Balde Diao.

The 19-year-old was a former Barcelona youth star, but chose to leave the Catalan giants in 2011, signing for Serie A giants Lazio instead.

With six goals and five assists for Lazio last season, the Spanish winger emerged as a potential star of the future, which prompted interest from Liverpool.

Keita's agent admitted that Liverpool had a bid of £16m rejected, whilst reports recently suggested that Lazio were holding out for €30m (£24m) for their prize starlet.

"Liverpool and Juventus offered a sum of 20 million euros (£16m) for Keita last summer, but Lazio always rejected their offers," said Anglo Cascella.

However, new manager Stefano Pioli is reportedly frustrated with Keita's poor displays this term, and could be ready to sell Keita in January - which may well be of interest to Rodgers again.

Yet so far, Rodgers has primarily used the 4-1-2-1-2 system that he enjoyed so much success with last season, and it's tough to see where Keita would fit in.

The pacy wide man primarily plays from the left hand flank so he can cut inside, and Rodgers should instead be more willing to fork out big money to sign a natural centre forward such as Jackson Martinez or Wilfried Bony.

Keita could be the latest player to be transformed by Rodgers, much like Raheem Sterling or Daniel Sturridge, but the Reds need a striker more than they do a winger.

Register for LIVERPOOL team updates

Register for HITC Sport - Daily Dispatch