How Arsenal spoiled Liverpool’s chances of signing world-class Suarez replacement

We all remember that season when Liverpool almost won the Premier League, but did you know that Arsenal played a massive role in preventing them from kicking on to potentially claiming it the following season?

Luis Suarez was the standout player in the English top-flight 2013-14 season, netting 31 goals for Liverpool. But after a classic Jose Mourinho job at Anfield and a collapse against Crystal Palace, Manchester City showed no mercy, nicking the title in the last couple of games.

Suarez left Liverpool for Barcelona that summer for £65million, but Liverpool failed to replace the Uruguayan with anyone worthy to lace his boots.

Liverpool football shirts

One player who certainly would have made things interesting for Brendan Rodgers’s side the following season was Alexis Sanchez, who was poised to leave Barcelona.

Barcelona needed to sell Sanchez to make way for Suarez, and Rodgers was keen to bring him the other way.

But the Chile forward had other plans, and instead signed for Arsenal in a £35m move.

Rodgers was lamenting that transfer on talkSPORT this week.

“We felt like Luis [Suarez] was going to move on and we needed to get a world-class operator to go like-for-like,” Rodgers said.

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Brendan Rodgers expressed his regret over Liverpool’s transfer struggles

Vintage Arsenal football shirts

“We finished second in the league playing a great level of football. Players were flexible in how they could play and then it was about trying to make that next step.

“And for that we needed to get a replacement. And we deemed Sanchez to be that one.”

Liverpool’s transfer business in the summer of 2014 was pretty appalling, considering the Champions League status and bump to the kitty thanks to the sale of Suarez.

Instead of Sanchez, they brought in forwards Rickie Lambert, Mario Balotelli, Lazar Markovic and Divock Origi. The buys in defence weren’t too hot either; Alberto Moreno and Dejan Lovren have been party to many calamities in Liverpool’s defence up to present day.

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Dejan Lovren was one of the players Rodgers brought in after Suarez’s departure

At least some of the money was well spent. Adam Lallana and Emre Can have been more than competent additions to Liverpool’s midfield. Just imagine if they’d added Sanchez too.

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alexhorlock

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