Exclusive: John Wark on Liverpool’s striker crisis

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John Wark tells HITC Sport that Liverpool need to replace Rickie Lambert and Mario Balotelli.

Former Liverpool midfielder John Wark has told HITC Sport that Mario Balotelli and Rickie Lambert aren’t good enough to play for Liverpool.

Brendan Rodgers recruited Lambert and Balotelli in the summer, and neither striker has made a significant contribution at Anfield following the departure of Luis Suarez.

Between them the pair have only scored seven goals this season, nothing near the required amount needed to replace the goals scored by Suarez. The lack of firepower from the pair has seen Raheem Sterling played in the central striking role in the absence of Daniel Sturridge.

Wark knows a thing or two about scoring goals for Liverpool, finishing as Liverpool’s top goal scorer from midfield ahead on Ian Rush in his first full season, scoring 27 times in 62 appearances.

The former Ipswich Town and Scotland player is adamant that Lambert and Balotelli need replacing and that whilst Sterling is doing well up front, an established striker could do better.

He said during an interview with HITC Sport: “Rickie Lambert isn’t good enough and Balotelli isn’t good enough in my opinion. He was a gamble and you never know, because he’s got the ability, which he showed at the World Cup, so he can do it, but he hasn’t done it for Liverpool and the same with Lambert.

“That’s why he’s having to play Sterling up front and other people that aren’t natural finishers.

“Sterling scored a great goal against Newcastle the other day but he missed two sitters. If that was a normal striker they would have come away with a hat-trick, but he’s not a natural finisher and they are playing him out of position.”

The Scotsman is also concerned about the amount of time that Sturridge has spent on the sidelines this season, although a recent hip operation could put an end to his injury troubles.

He added: “Hopefully Sturridge will be fit for next season, but I can’t work that one out, he’s been injured for a long, long time. You don’t know if it’s injuries or if it’s in his head as well, it’s dragged on a long time now.

“But on his day he’s brilliant, and hopefully they can get another top striker up with him.”

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