So Liverpool are looking at replacing Steven Gerrard are they? Well apparently, if reports are to be believed the club are considering long-term 'contingency' plans for when he decides to call it a day.
Jonjo Shelvey's late brace last night was, dare we say it, Gerrard-esque, and it has been suggested the 20-year-old could even take up the mantle for club and country.
However according reports in Spain, the Reds are weighing up a potential offer for Ander Herrera of Athletic Bilbao either in January or next summer.
So who is he and is he good enough to replace Gerrard?
First off, nobody is going to 'replace' Gerrard really, the club will simply adapt. Look at the way Arsenal have replaced star after star, by changing their system slightly and evolving into a new force to be reckoned with thanks to the players at their disposal.
Secondly, yes Ander Herrera is good enough to be a major force for Liverpool if he were to be signed. The fact he plays for the impressive Athletic Bilbao is an indication of his talent, last season's runners-up in both the Copa del Rey and the Europa League.
He was part of the team which dominated Manchester United home and away in the competition last season, knocking them out, and the previous summer he took his club partnership onto the international stage, making an impression alongside Javi Martinez as Spain won the Under-21 European Championship.
The amazing wealth of midfielders at Spain's disposal has prevented him from earning a call-up to the senior squad, and perhaps a move to a 'bigger club' would enhance his international claims.
It certainly worked for Xabi Alonso at Liverpool, and Herrera would do well to follow in his footsteps and become the latest Spaniard in a long line of them to wear the Liverpool shirt.
This year Liverpool have Nuri Sahin in their midfield ranks, and while he is still finding form, he will no doubt have an impact, but Real Madrid have made it quite clear they don't see the move being permanent, meaning Liverpool will have to look elsewhere for a new midfielder next summer in all likelihood.
Gerrard won't be looking to walk away next summer, no chance, but it would make sense to bring in a player aimed at 'replacing' him in the long-term, and have them play together and have the youngster learn from him.
Herrera has only just turned 23, and has plenty to offer. He can play in a variety of positions across the midfield, in a defensive role or an attacking one, can make tackles, provide chances, and score goals.
He'd be perfect for Liverpool's midfield three, and his Spanish footballing mindset would be ideal for Brendan Rodgers' planned style of football he is trying to implement.
Herrera would improve the midfields of any of the Premier League top four, especially rivals Manchester United, but he would cost far less than the astronomical fee Javi Martinez was sold to Bayern for, indeed some of the figures being suggested actually sound quite reasonable.
Which is why if Liverpool are considering a swoop for him in either January or next summer, they should push ahead and go for it, because they would be bringing in one of Spain's best up and coming midfield talents, which really says something in itself.
Do you agree, should Liverpool go for Herrera?
image: © birasuegi
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