The humiliating 6-1 defeat at Stoke brought the curtain down on what was a disappointing season at Anfield, and although Liverpool still have European football to look forward to in the form of the Europa League in 2015/2016, big changes are set to be made during the summer.
Brendan Rodgers has wasted no time in delving into the transfer market to bring in players who could make the all-important difference in domestic and European competitions. James Milner could turn out to be the bargain of the summer following his free transfer from Manchester City, but the acquisition of Danny Ings from relegated Burnley may have raised a few eyebrows amongst Liverpool fans.
The Reds beat a number of Premier League clubs to the signing of a player who was always predicted to move onto pastures new during the summer transfer window, and it could turn out to be a headline move that gets Liverpool firing once again.
Liverpool will undoubtedly continue to scour the market for even more acquisitions in what could be a busy summer of new arrivals and exits at Anfield, but signing a workaholic midfielder and a striker who managed more goals than all of Liverpool’s strikers put together is a good start.
Scoring eleven goals for a team that, despite their wonderful work ethic and determination, were always likely to struggle in the Premier League is a mark of just how good Danny Ings performed during the 2014/2015 season.
The 22-year-old is the typical predatory striker who makes the right movements in the box and anticipates mistakes to be in the best place to tuck the ball into the back of the net. Despite his relatively small stature, Ings is more than adept at scoring with headers, with his pace and direct approach making him a real nuisance for opposing defenders in and around the penalty area.
Liverpool may have to pay compensation around the £7 million mark, but if he develops his game even further at Anfield, then it could prove to be money well spent.
Does he have the X-factor?
Liverpool fans will be able to see their new signing in action for England Under 21’s during their European Championship campaign in the Czech Republic.
However, the most important question is whether Ings is the type of player that can make a name for himself at Anfield and make amends for the considerable lack of goals that cost Liverpool dear last season.
There is enough in his game to believe that he could form a good partnership with Daniel Sturridge if the latter remains fit and injury-free, but those looking for high-profile arrivals may feel disappointed that Rodgers has signed a 22-year-old that may be overwhelmed by the expectation to deliver at Anfield.
Time will tell as to whether Ings will be a successful signing, but while last summer’s signings Mario Balotelli and Rickie Lambert failed to make any sort of impact in front of goal, it is important for Liverpool to get behind their new striker who has a lot of promise.
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