Risk worth the reward for Liverpool with latest midfield target
If Liverpool needed any proof that a player was capable of coming back with a bang after the best part of two years on the sidelines then they only have to look at legendary Brazilian forward Ronaldo.
After missing all of the year 2000 and the majority of 2001, Ronaldo eased his way back into action at Inter Milan and went on to score eight goals at the 2002 World Cup, which not only made him the tournament’s top scorer, but also ensured Brazil lifted the trophy.
He then went on to have a successful period at Real Madrid with a strike rate of better than a goal every two games and added a La Liga title to his trophy cabinet.
Like Ronaldo, it is another Brazilian that has been on the long-term injury list that has attracted Liverpool, with midfielder Romulo missing close to 18 months after requiring two operations to cure a knee injury.
Prior to this, Romulo looked the first-choice holding midfielder for the Brazilian national team, performing the role that had been dutifully carried out by Dunga and Gilberto Silva previously.
However, there is more to Romulo’s game than simply marshalling the defence, as he is far more mobile than Gilberto ever was, alongside being more adept in possession and more forward thinking with his passing.
Spartak Moscow want £10m for the 23-year-old and this would represent a serious bargain if Romulo is fully recovered from his knee troubles.
Understandably, Liverpool are in a lower ball park given the risks associated, but with Lucas injured and a general shortage in his midfield squad depth, Brendan Rodgers may be best to roll the dice and hope he throws a double six.
Other midfield options have been touted, with Nigel De Jong linked on loan from AC Milan, Ghana’s Emmanuel Badu mentioned from Udinese and Yann M’Vila perhaps representing the best option from Rubin Kazan.
Liverpool’s odds are 10/11 to finish in the top four this season and their chances would be significantly increased if they strengthen their midfield options in January.